New Jersey Umbilical Cord Birth Injury Attorneys
Representing Victims of Prolapsed Cord, Nuchal Cord, Umbilical Knots, & Cysts
The umbilical cord is an integral component of a healthy pregnancy, allowing your body to provide your baby with vital oxygen and nutrients. Since the umbilical cord is extremely important for the health of your growing child, conditions that affect the umbilical cord can cause serious complications during pregnancy, labor and delivery. If your doctor fails to recognize an umbilical cord prolapse, nuchal cord, single umbilical artery, umbilical knots or cysts, the consequences can be a devastating birth injury. Physicians must identify umbilical cord problems and make appropriate plans to ensure the successful birth of your baby. Failure to diagnose or address an umbilical cord condition may constitute medical malpractice and mean you have grounds for a lawsuit.
If you or your child suffered injuries as a result of an umbilical cord missed diagnosis or medical negligence involving the umbilical cord, contact our New Jersey birth injury attorneys to discuss your specific situation. We are highly experienced in the realm of prenatal and neonatal malpractice and will explain your rights and legal options. The consultation is absolutely free and so is our representation until we achieve you the compensation you deserve. Call (866)-708-8617 or contact us online to arrange a free case evaluation.
Umbilical Cord: The Basics
The umbilical cord is a flexible tube that attaches you to your baby during pregnancy. It acts as your baby’s lifeline during the gestational period, supplying them with the oxygen and nutrients they need to grow. The umbilical cord is comprised of three separate blood vessels, one of which transports oxygen and nutrients, while the other two bring waste back to the placenta to be removed from the body.
When the umbilical cord begins to develop at approximately four weeks, it is tiny just like your baby. By the time you give birth, the umbilical cord will be approximately 22 inches long. After the delivery of your child, he or she will no longer rely on the umbilical cord to survive. Unfortunately, there are a host of serious conditions affecting the umbilical cord that may pose a danger to your baby’s health and survival before birth.
Umbilical Cord Conditions
Depending on the specific condition affecting your umbilical cord, it may be compressed, knotted, not securely fastened to the placenta, too short, too long, or in the wrong position. Some of the most common umbilical cord problems are explained below.
Umbilical Cord Prolapse
Umbilical cord prolapse occurs during labor and delivery when the umbilical cord exits through the mother’s cervix prior to the baby’s head. When the umbilical cord slips through the birth canal ahead of the infant, the cord can become wrapped around the baby’s head or become squeezed. In either case, the baby may experience dangerous oxygen deprivation that leads to stillbirth, severe brain damage, or other complications. Some of the most common precursors for umbilical cord prolapse include: premature birth, low birthweight, abnormal birth presentation (i.e. breech delivery), an abnormally long umbilical cord, and excessive amniotic fluid.
Nuchal cord is a serious situation that occurs when the umbilical cord becomes wrapped around the baby’s neck. Nuchal cord is more common in male pregnancies, as well as multiple pregnancies. Some of the other reasons why a nuchal cord may happen include: breech delivery position, when the infant is abnormally large in size (fetal macrosomia), and when there is too much amniotic fluid. It is absolutely essential for doctors to identify a nuchal cord and take appropriate measures to avoid harm or death of the child. An unidentified or untreated nuchal cord can result in lack of oxygen, fetal distress, and hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE).
Umbilical Cord Knots
As the term suggests, the umbilical cord can become stuck in a knot. Sometimes, a knot will develop because the umbilical cord is too long, while the baby is moving around, or in pregnancies with twins. The danger of an umbilical cord knot is the risk that it compresses the umbilical cord, causing pressure or squeezing that may ultimately deprive your baby of oxygen and nutrients. If an umbilical cord knot is pulled tightly, the baby can die while still in the womb. When a baby dies prior to 20 weeks of gestation, this is known as a miscarriage. On the other hand, a baby can also die during labor if a doctor fails to perform an emergency C-section. Delayed C-section in cases involving umbilical cord knots can also lead to respiratory distress and severe neurological damage.
Umbilical Cord Cysts
An umbilical cord cyst is a fluid-filled sac that develops in the umbilical cord. There are two different types of umbilical cord cysts: true cysts and pseudocysts. A true cyst contains embryonic cells, while a pseudocyst (false cyst) is filled with fluid. Cysts are associated with a variety of birth defects and genetic conditions that your doctor should test for during prenatal ultrasounds and screenings. In pregnancies involving larger cysts, a cesarean may be necessary to prevent a cyst from rupturing.
Complications of Umbilical Cord Malpractice
It is your doctor’s responsibility to perform ultrasounds and conduct other prenatal testing to detect issues with the umbilical cord. Failure to identify an umbilical cord problem and perform an appropriate medical intervention may lead to serious birth injuries. In fact, many risky umbilical cord scenarios can be alleviated through C-section delivery. Medical negligence involving the umbilical cord may lead to any of the following:
- Fetal distress
- Oxygen deprivation
- Cerebral Palsy
- Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE)
- Cognitive impairments
- Learning disabilities
- Developmental delays
- Wrongful death
Contact New Jersey Umbilical Cord Injury Lawyers for a Free Case Evaluation
Did your child suffer a birth injury resulting from umbilical cord complications? It is highly advisable to seek knowledgeable legal counsel from an experienced birth injury attorney. Our law firm pursues compensation for birth injury victims throughout the New Jersey and New York area. If you need help bringing a doctor or other healthcare provider to justice for failing to detect or treat your umbilical cord problem, we are here for you. Contact us today at (866)-708-8617 for a free consultation. Our New Jersey umbilical cord injury attorneys are dedicated to pursuing maximum damages.
Umbilical Cord Conditions, March of Dimes
Umbilical Cord Complications, Medscape