Houston Birth Injury Lawyer: Birth Asphyxia & Brain Damage Cases
As Houston birth injury lawyers, we know that there are few things more painful than learning that your baby may have received a brain injury during pregnancy or the birthing process. Babies who have suffered brain damage are likely to require lifelong care. Depending on their condition, they may need extensive medical support, physical therapy, home care, and many other additional resources to ever have a chance at reaching their full potential.
Unfortunately, many of these services are extremely expensive. For these (and many other) reasons, if you suspect that something went wrong before, during, or directly after the birth of your child that could have been avoided with proper medical care, it may be wise to seek legal counsel and to investigate the potential for a claim.
Mithoff Law has over four decades of experience handling birth injury cases involving brain damage. We are here to make sure your child’s best interests are fully represented and to hold any responsible parties accountable. Take a moment to learn more about the legal processes surrounding babies with brain damage, and call us to explore your options.
What to do if your child received brain damage due to negligence or malpractice
In the chaos and confusion of adjusting your life to supporting a child diagnosed with brain damage, it can be overwhelming to have to address your concerns about the quality of care that you and your baby received. Here, we’ve outlined a few initial steps parents can take to find representation and initiate an investigation.
Note: For clarification of negligence and malpractice, please see our article on The Difference Between Negligence and Medical Malpractice.
1. Contact a Houston birth injury lawyer
If you believe that negligence or malpractice may have factored into your baby’s brain damage, one of the best things you can do for your case is to hire a reputable Houston birth injury lawyer. When selecting your representation, look for a personal injury law firm that demonstrates the following:
Experience: Look for a Houston birth injury lawyer with a strong record of success in this specific area of the law. Ideally, your lawyer will have additional experience specifically as a Houston brain injury lawyer. Note that these lawyers may advertise simply as a “catastrophic injury lawyer” or “medical malpractice attorney” without having the specific experience your case may require.
Access to expert witnesses: Expert witnesses are subject-matter experts that can testify in court about matters that fall in their field of expertise. For example, your Houston birth injury lawyer may request a neurologist or obstetrician to testify about your child’s medical condition or best practices in the birthing process.
An established and positive reputation: Although Mithoff Law strives to relieve their clients of as much of the burden of litigation as possible, the bottom line is that legal processes are rarely easy or brief. It is much better to navigate a settlement or trial with a seasoned legal team you know you can trust from the outset.
Mithoff Law has decades of experience representing Texas families in birth injury cases. Over the years, we have earned a reputation as one of Houston’s most renowned personal injury law firms. The firm has also built a strong network of subject-matter experts who specialize in brain damage and trauma.
We have won many birth brain damage cases, including one landmark case involving claims against a hospital and hospital personnel for negligence during a child’s birth. The doctor in charge of the birth did not respond to an urgent summons during delivery and the baby suffered severe brain damage from lack of oxygen.
Mithoff Law negotiated a settlement for the family prior to trial, including a lump sum payment of $4 million and periodic monthly payments of $7,000 for the life of the injured child, guaranteed for at least 20 years. At the time of the settlement, the value of the future periodic payments was estimated at up to $115 million.
2. Organize your documentation
When possible, begin to collect documentation relevant to your pregnancy and birth. This type of documentation can include:
– Records of previous doctor’s visits
– Medical images related to the pregnancy
– Paperwork regarding the birth, especially paperwork regarding your child’s brain injury
– Notes or images that document symptoms
– Names and contact information of relevant medical personnel
3. Learn as much as you can about your baby’s condition
One of the best things that you can do for your case and for you and your baby’s health is to learn more about their condition. On top of everything else, parents with a baby diagnosed with brain damage are often inundated with a slew of new information, including different types of conditions. We’ve outlined several of these below.
Anoxia/Hypoxia: Both birth anoxia and birth hypoxia are symptoms of birth asphyxia that contribute to brain damage caused by a lack of oxygen. The terms are frequently used interchangeably but have different medical meanings. Anoxia is the absence of oxygen supply to organ tissue, while hypoxia is decreased or reduced oxygen supply to organ tissue. Anoxia and hypoxia can both occur despite adequate blood flow.
Birth asphyxia: Birth asphyxia (also called perinatal asphyxia) occurs when a baby stops breathing during birth. Birth asphyxia can be caused by a long or difficult delivery (especially those in which the baby spends an extended amount of time in the birth canal), issues with the umbilical cord, infection, problems with how the placenta separated from the womb, a lack of oxygen in a mother’s bloodstream, and problems with the anatomy of a baby’s airway.
Cerebral palsy (CP): Cerebral palsy is a condition that affects a child’s ability to control their muscles. There are four main different types of cerebral palsy which vary in severity and symptoms. CP is caused by brain damage to the developing brain, more frequently before or during birth. It can be caused by a lack of oxygen, infection, or physical trauma to the brain. A child may not show symptoms of CP for several months after birth.
Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE): Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy is an umbrella term used to describe neonatal brain injuries caused by either lack of oxygen or blood in the brain. HIEs are considered a type of neonatal encephalopathy.
Neonatal encephalopathy: Neonatal encephalopathy is another umbrella term used to describe neurological issues in newborns. Its scope is not limited to brain injuries caused by a lack of oxygen; it also includes brain injuries caused by infection, hemorrhages, stroke, etc.
Some babies with brain damage may not have a specific condition, but may still suffer from side effects of brain damage, including mental retardation, developmental delay, motor impairment, and other issues with muscle function.
Contact the Houston birth injury lawyers at Mithoff Law
If you are seeking the help of a birth brain injury lawyer, Mithoff law can provide you and your family with the representation they need during this difficult time. Our intentionally small and streamlined firm will work hard on behalf of your child’s future and give your case the focus and attention it deserves.
If your child was diagnosed with a pediatric anoxic brain injury, cerebral palsy, or another type of HIE, put your case in the hands of nationally-recognized birth injury lawyers. Contact Mithoff Law by calling 713-654-1122 today.
Houston Brain Injury Attorney
A Houston brain injury attorney helps clients pursue cases related to personal injury and head trauma. Brain injuries can cause lasting side effects, permanent disabilities, and even death. You need an advocate who will help you navigate the settlement or trial process in a thorough and thoughtful manner. If you or a loved one received a head injury, the Houston brain injury lawyers at Mithoff Law are ready to help.
Call 713-654-1122 to get started.
“Mithoff, a Houston personal injury lawyer, is no stranger to winning big payoffs for large groups of people. He negotiated a $2.3 billion settlement with the tobacco industry for Harris and other counties, and he won $80 million for residents of a nursing home who were killed in a 2005 bus explosion while fleeing Hurricane Rita.”
– Houston Chronicle, November 22, 2017
Unfortunately, serious brain injuries can occur from a wide variety of common causes, such as vehicle accidents, industrial accidents and explosions, and medical malpractice. The experienced attorneys at Mithoff Law have decades of experience representing clients and families of those who have suffered traumatic brain injuries, including claims such as:
Recently, Mithoff Law was retained by the family of a toddler who was hit in the head by a foul ball during a Houston Astros game and sustained serious neurologic injuries.
Mithoff Law successfully resolved for a confidential amount the claims of a patient who suffered severe and permanent brain injury at an outpatient treatment facility. The plaintiffs alleged that the patient was mistakenly administered an anti-diabetic medication, when the patient was not a diabetic, resulting in severe and permanent brain injury.
Mithoff Law successfully resolved for a confidential amount the claims of a family relating to severe brain damage of an infant suffered at birth. The plaintiffs alleged that, during the delivery process, hospital staff inappropriately monitored the mother, and that doctors improperly administered medication, resulting in severe and permanent brain damage to the baby.
Mithoff Law represented the family of a young man who sustained severe and permanent brain injuries when he was involved in an offset frontal collision. The young man’s injuries required a plan for lifelong care, as he was no longer able to care for himself following the accident. The case was settled for a confidential amount.
Severe brain injuries often involve complex questions regarding future care, and the magnitude of the injuries are often daunting for those living with the consequences. Mithoff Law’s experienced attorneys have developed long-lasting relationships with medical and subject-matter experts across several fields, such as neurology, neurosurgery, neuropsychology, and life care planning, who are invaluable to assessing and evaluating questions of future care or ongoing treatment in a litigation context.
What can I expect after a head injury?
An experienced brain injury lawyer is often quick to tell clients that a head injury should never be taken lightly, and for good reason. Even a single blow to the head can cause lasting damage, and it is prudent to get a medical evaluation to determine the severity of the injury and a prognosis for treatment as soon as possible after sustaining the injury.
Common side effects to look out for include:
- Blurred vision
- Trouble staying awake
- Difficulty balancing
- Loss of hearing
- Impaired decision making
- Memory loss
Remember: Your health should always be the first priority. Let a Houston brain injury attorney from Mithoff Law take care of the rest.
What are the costs associated with a head injury?
Every head injury brings the possibility of expensive medical bills due to the need for medical imaging and other procedures to determine the severity of the injury. The nature of these injuries is such that the burden of managing these appointments and payments falls on the victim’s loved ones.
Associated costs might include:
- Ambulance or life flight
- Medical tests
- Overnight monitoring
- Brain surgery
- Physical therapy
- Medical equipment
- Funeral costs
Types of brain injuries
Houston brain injury attorneys work with clients who have received different types of head and brain injuries. These injuries vary depending on the direction and amount of force that impacts the head, and may include:
Open head injury:
Injuries that result in a puncture wound or crack in the skull. These injuries are often bloody and usually require stitches to close the wound.
Closed head injury:
Injuries where the skull is not broken or punctured, but the brain has received trauma. A typical example of a closed head injury is a concussion.
Diffuse axonal injury:
Axons are long connecting fibers interwoven throughout your brain tissue. Diffuse axonal injuries happen when these fibers tear due to rapid acceleration and deceleration of the brain. For example, an automotive accident that results in whiplash may cause a diffuse axonal injury.
Traumatic brain injury (TBI):
Over 1.7 million people in the United States suffer a traumatic brain injury (TBI) each year.
These injuries are more substantial than mild or moderate head injuries. Traumatic brain injuries are often the result of extreme trauma and can cause permanent side effects.
Contact a Houston brain injury attorney at Mithoff Law for help
The brain injury lawyers at Mithoff Law have obtained substantial verdicts and settlements for brain-injured clients.
If you or a loved one suffered a brain injury due to the fault of another party, only trust an experienced team to assist you. We are ready to provide you with nationally recognized representation and the highest level of care.
Don’t wait any longer. Contact a Houston brain injury attorney at Mithoff Law by calling 713-654-1122.