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Cephalohematoma Caused During Operative Delivery


If your infant has sustained cephalohematoma – a type of newborn brain bleed — during operative delivery, a Cleveland medical claims lawyer can help you determine if this was caused as the result of the doctor’s negligence or failure to provide a reasonable standard of care.

Should an attorney discover that the physician was indeed at fault for your child’s birth injury, you may be entitled to file a medical malpractice claim in an effort to recoup your medical expenses and lost wages.

What Is cephalohematoma?

When broken down, cephalohematoma consists of the Latin words for “cephalo,” meaning head, and “hematoma,” which means a pool of blood. A cephalohematoma occurs when a newborn has a brain bleed under the periosteum, which is a structure that covers the skull.

Blood vessels and nerves run through the periosteum before reaching the bone, so when a newborn has a cephalohematoma, the blood will collect between this membrane and the skull.

A cephalohematoma can occur during operative delivery using forceps or a vacuum. According to a paper calledVacuum-Assisted Vaginal Delivery,” authored by Christina D. Hook, M.D. and James R. Damos, M.D., vacuum delivery increases the rate of newborn brain bleeds as compared to forceps-assisted deliveries.

Other risk factors that could increase the risk of a cephalohematoma include:

  • using the vacuum for more than 20 minutes at a time;
  • pulling three times in a row without making progress with the delivery; and
  • more than three instances of vacuum disengagements.

Typically, this type of newborn brain bleed heals on its own without medical treatment; however, in rare cases, a cephalohematoma could result in jaundice or hyperbilirubinemia. If your child develops these conditions, medical intervention may be required.

Proving Your Medical Claim Case

Not all birth injuries are considered medical malpractice. In order for your medical claims to be successful, you must be able to prove that (a) the doctor was negligent and that (b) the doctor’s actions are responsible for your child’s injuries.

Your Cleveland attorney may enlist the expertise of a medical witness who can testify on your behalf that your physician did not act in a manner that any reasonable physician in the situation would have behaved.

In addition to working with a medical expert, your lawyer can gather evidence to support your claim and deal with the medical malpractice insurance company on your behalf.

Contact a Medical Claims Lawyer Today

If you believe that your physician was negligent or acted in an unreasonable manner during operative delivery — resulting in your child’s cephalohematoma – you may be entitled to file a medical malpractice claim against him or her in an effort to recover the compensation you need for medical treatment as well as mental distress.

At The Becker Law Firm, our Cleveland attorneys are dedicated to upholding the rights of families affected by a birth injury. We can help you navigate the complicated claims process in an effort to obtain compensation for your losses. For more information on our firm, please call (440) 252-4399 today for a free case evaluation.

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