Oregon Birth Injuries Caused by Pitocin: Portland & Bend Medical Malpractice Lawyer Explains

Pitocin and Oregon Birth Injuries: Portland Medical Malpractice Lawyer Explains


Birth injuries are some of the worst types of Oregon medical malpractice.  This is because newborns are absolutely defenseless.  Parents and the newborn baby rely on healthcare professionals to properly care for and treat the mother and baby, and to deliver the baby successfully without harm.  However, this is not always the case.  Sometimes a healthcare professional will cause serious personal injuries to the baby during the labor and delivery process.  One common injury is due to Pitocin, a powerful drug used to induce labor.  These injuries can cause life-long injuries to a baby, including cerebral palsy which is very devastating.  Where there may be a birth injury, ask a Portland medical malpractice lawyer whether there may have been mistakes which could have been avoided and may be negligent.


What is Pitocin?


Pitocin is a relatively safe drug, but also a very powerful drug.  It is a drug used to induce labor or help quicken labor.  Pitocin is a synthetic version (lab created) version of oxytocin, which is a hormone that your body produces to induce contractions during labor.  Pitocin is usually administered in an IV drip at a low rate.  It will slowly be increased in slow increments until you either have contractions every two or three minutes, or the maximum allowed dosage is achieved.  Once contractions are every two or three minutes, or the maximum dosage is reached, the dosage will remain the same unless contractions become too strong and dangerous or the baby or decrease in frequency.


How Can Pitocin Overdoses Cause a Birth Injury?


Pitocin is a very powerful drug.  There are several ways that Pitocin overdose can cause a birth injury such as cerebral palsy.


First, using Pitocin at an improper time.  This commonly includes using Pitocin when the cervix is not dilated enough to deliver the baby.  The cervix if the final “wall” or barrier before the baby an enter the birth canal.  If the cervix is not open, the baby cannot pass.  Pitocin will not help the cervix dilate, it will only induce contractions.  


Usually 10cm dilation is standard, but it can be less or more depending on the size of the baby and other factors.  If a healthcare provider administers Pitocin before the cervix is fully dilated, the mother will begin contractions which will only push the baby into the cervix.  This affect is like smashing the baby’s head against a wall.  It can cause brain injuries and damage, as well as a deprivation of oxygen.  This is especially true if there is a Pitocin overdose, which is stronger than the body’s natural hormones.  


Second, the use of Pitocin can cause damage to a baby when there is an overdose.  That is because Pitocin is a very powerful drug and not a natural drug, but a lab-made drug.  It can cross the blood-umbilical cord barrier and have interactions with the baby.  This can cause significant effects on the baby, particularly the baby’s brain and development which can result in cerebral palsy.


Victims of an Oregon Birth Injury Which Resulted from a Pitocin Overdose Should Call our Bend and Portland Medical Malpractice Lawyer


A Pitocin overdose is very serious and can result in horrific injuries to a newborn.  These injuries can result in catastrophic Oregon medical malpractice which should be evaluated by a Portland/Bend medical malpractice lawyer.  Our law firm handle cases throughout Oregon, including Central Oregon, Deschutes County, Salem, Portland, Eugene, Gresham, Hillsboro, Medford, and any other city, including Bend, Oregon where our law office is located.  


Please call Kuhlman Law, LLC by dialing (541) 385-1999 to learn what your rights to compensation you may have.  You may also contact us using our easy and convenient “contact us” box at the bottom of our website.  If we accept your case, we will conduct a thorough investigation to get you the answers you deserve, all for free.  There is no risk, and you only pay us if we recover compensation for you.    

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