Shoulder Dystocia

Shoulder Dystocia Lawyers

Shoulder Dystocia typically involves permanent injuries to the baby and occasionally serious health complications for the mother.

Prince George’s County Shoulder Dystocia Lawyers

What is Shoulder Dystocia?

The term dystocia describes a difficult delivery.  Shoulder dystocia occurs when the fetus’ shoulders become entrapped in the birth canal after the head has emerged.  This entrapment creates a delay in the delivery and often requires the doctor to perform special maneuvers to free the babies shoulder.  This condition occurs in about 1 to 4% of head first deliveries.

Delays in delivery are dangerous for the mother and the baby. Shoulder dystocia is particularly dangerous to the baby because a delay in delivery occurs while the baby is in a particularly vulnerable position.  This vulnerable position as well as efforts to free the baby from the position may result in stress being placed on the babies’ neck and brachial plexus.  This stress often results in brachial plexus palsy, Erb’s palsy or paralysis.   Shoulder dystocia may also cause fractures of the clavicle or the humerus.  These injuries often result in permanent injuries and a loss of function for the baby.

The labor and delivery error lawyers at Patterson Law offer free consultations for victims of birth injuries to determine whether the injuries are due to medical malpractice.

Shoulder Dystocia is Potentially Fatal

How Shoulder Dystocia Occurs

In a normal delivery the baby’s head emerges and the anterior shoulder follows.  The doctor may need to reposition the baby or apply gentle pressure for this shoulder to emerge.  Shoulder dystocia occurs when the anterior shoulder becomes trapped behind the pubic symphysis.  When this occurs the baby’s head may be seen pulling back into the mother.  This is an emergency.  This emergency can be even more urgent if the umbilical cord becomes trapped between the fetus and the mother’s pelvis depriving the baby of blood flow.  This deprivation can lead to permanent neurologic damage and sometimes death.

The Bowie birth injury lawyers at Patterson law offer free consultations to evaluate whether labor and delivery errors are responsible for injuries to your baby.

The injuries from shoulder dystocia are often difficult to assess in an infant.  Often, time has to pass before the full extent of the motor, sensory and nerve function damage in an infant may be assessed.

Shoulder Dystocia is a Medical Emergency

Urgent Medical Action is Required

Shoulder dystocia is a medical emergency and by definition timely action is required.  There are multiple maneuvers that doctors may utilize to free the baby.  This overview is too short to describe each available maneuver.  Shoulder dystocia is most likely to occur where there is a disparity between the size of the baby and the maternal pelvis.  The larger the baby is compared to the pelvis the greater the risk.  If such a risk is identified a cesarean delivery can prevent shoulder dystocia.

Mr. Patterson engaged critical subject matter experts that really helped uncover all the facts and magnify the negligence in my case. He never gave up on me and the outcome of my case was better than expected.


A personal injury client.

Shoulder dystocia can lead to life-time of needed care and difficulties for its victims.

George Patterson, Bowie Personal Injury Lawyer

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George Patterson is a lifetime member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocate’s Forum.  Membership is limited to those who have achieved a verdict or settlement of at least two million dollars.

Get Started Today

If your child suffered shoulder dystocia please contact the labor and delivery error lawyers at Patterson Law to schedule a free consultation.  The birth injury lawyers may be reached at 301-383-1522.

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