Permanent Brachial Plexus Injury: Oregon Birth Injury Lawyers

Oregon birth injury brachial plexus injury

Compensation for a Permanent Brachial Plexus Injury Explained by Our Oregon Birth Injury Lawyers


One common type of birth injury is a brachial plexus injury. The brachial plexus is a bundle of nerves which comes off of the cervical spine, or the neck. The brachial plexus extends through the base of the neck, into the shoulder girdle, and down the arm to the fingertips. This bundle of nerves serves to provide sensation, motor movement, and other important functions. If the brachial plexus is damaged in anyway it can result in a decrease in sensation or motor function throughout part of where the entire arm, hand, and fingers. While there are many ways that a brachial plexus injury could be caused, a birth injury is usually how a brachial plexus injury is caused. Well some forms of brachial plexus injuries are temporary, a permanent brachial plexus injury could result in a lifetime of disability and difficulty. Our Oregon birth injury lawyers explain a victim’s rights after a permanent brachial plexus injury is caused by Oregon medical malpractice.


Understanding the Brachial Plexus


As noted above, the brachial plexus is a bundle of nerves originating from the spine in the neck. While each of these nerves comes off of the spine individually and then combines to form the brachial plexus, each nerve fiber maintains its unique identity. Meaning, that when the bundle of nerves combined to form the brachial plexus they are really like a twine rope; each individual fiber still runs the line of the combined bundle. This is important because each strand of nerves has a specific duty and purpose which is not lost when the nerves combine into the brachial plexus.


Some of these nerves govern the sense of touch, temperature, pressure, moisture, pain, movement, and other important functions. Thus, if one of these nerves or one of the strands of nerves is damaged a victim may have and inability to feel pain but is still able to sense temperature, pressure, and move. There could be many other combinations of sensation and movement functions after a brachial plexus injury.


Causes of Brachial Plexus Injuries: Oregon Birth Injury Lawyers


The main causes of brachial plexus injuries is the labor and delivery process. This is more commonly known as the birthing process. Thus, Oregon birth injuries are the most common cause of brachial plexus injuries. It is still important to note that brachial plexus injuries may be caused by motor vehicle accidents, slip and falls, trauma such as violence, and any other mechanism of injury to the base of the neck or shoulder.


In terms of Oregon medical malpractice, there are generally two common causes of brachial plexus injuries. The first is known as a condition called shoulder dystocia. This is essentially when the baby’s shoulder, arm, and neck get caught in the birth canal. This could be due to a large baby, a small birthing canal, or a combination of both. Shoulder dystocia is when the baby’s arm essentially gets in the way of a smooth birth.


The second cause of a permanent brachial plexus injury is when a doctor or healthcare provider grabs the babies arm through the birthing canal and either pulls, yanks, or otherwise drags the baby through the birthing canal from his or her arm. This can cause the arm or the neck to get hung up in the birthing canal, particularly in the pelvis or on the pubic bone, which can then stretch the nerves which start at the neck and extend through the shoulder down to the fingertips.


Generally, shoulder dystocia and pulling or yanking on a baby’s arm go hand-in-hand. Meaning, shoulder dystocia usually results in a doctor or healthcare professional pulling on a baby’s arm. And a physician usually has to pull on a baby’s arm when there is a condition such as shoulder dystocia. There may be other instances where a physician needs to pull on a baby’s arm to get the baby quickly out of the birth canal, including fetal distress due to some form of hypoxia. However, many times proper care and treatment for a baby and they mother could completely avoid a brachial plexus injury. It is this failure to examine, evaluate, and predict possible risks and complications that can result in Oregon medical malpractice and preventable birth injuries.


Permanent Disability from Brachial Plexus Injuries


A brachial plexus injury it is usually minor and heals with minimal treatment. However, there are still some forms of the brachial plexus injuries which result in catastrophic damage. This includes when the nerves from the are completely pulled away from the spinal cord. This is known as an avulsion. This is very difficult for a surgeon to repair in a baby and usually results in the permanent loss of function or sensation. This is usually how a brachial plexus injury it Is permanent. 


A brachial plexus injury could also result in permanent damages when the nerve is ruptured, or torn, anywhere in the arm or shoulder. When this happens, surgeons may be able to repair the damage to the nerves to restore some sensation and motor movement. However it is possible that these efforts may fail and a person may never regain full sensation or movement. 


A person with a permanent brachial plexus injury may have problems and difficulties caring for himself or herself. A person’s ability to use that arm may also be greatly affected which can limit a newborn’s career options in the future. While it could be speculative to consider what jobs a baby could have right at birth, looking at the parents present jobs and any jobs or abilities of siblings could be used to help make these arguments in court. 


A baby with a brachial plexus injury may also have severe problems and difficulties with daily life. This includes performing many basic functions such as brushing teeth, driving a car, and buttoning a shirt. Again, while this may seem so far in the future to a newborn who has suffered a birth injury, these are important inquiries to make in a brachial plexus birth injury lawsuit. This is because these are the disabilities a newborn will have to endure, manage, and recover compensation for now.


Ask Our Permanent Brachial Plexus Injury Lawyers for Help Today


If you or a loved one have been seriously injured or killed as a result of medical malpractice contact the Oregon Medical Malpractice Lawyers at Kuhlman Law at our number below or fill out the intake form.  We offer a free initial case evaluation and handle cases on a contingency fee which means that you pay no money unless we recover. 


Our law firm handles cases throughout the state including Bend and Portland Oregon, Redmond, Central Oregon, Sisters, Madras, Multnomah County, Deschutes County, Salem, Eugene, Corvallis, Lane County, Medford, Gresham, La Grande, Albany, Medford, Beaverton, Umatilla, Pendleton,  Cottage Grove, Florence, Oregon City, Springfield, Keizer, Grants Pass, McMinnville, Tualatin, West Linn, Forest Grove, Wilsonville, Newberg, Roseburg, Lake Oswego, Klamath Falls, Happy Valley, Tigard, Ashland, Milwakie, Coos Bay, The Dalles,  St. Helens, Sherwood, Central Point, Canby, Troutdale, Hermiston, Silverton, Hood River, Newport, Prineville, Astoria, Tillamook, Lincoln City, Hillsboro, and Vancouver, Washington.  


We also have an office in Minneapolis, Minnesota and take medical malpractice cases throughout the Twin Cities, including St. Paul, Hennepin County, Ramsey County, Dakota County, Washington County, Anoka County, Scott County, Blaine, Stillwater, and Saint Paul Minnesota.  


Please act quickly, there is a limited time (Statute of Limitations) in which you can bring a claim under the law.

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