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Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC)

Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC) Lawyers In Cleveland


There is likely no topic more controversial in the obstetric community than vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC). Many people want to have a natural childbirth experience, which leads to them attempt a standard vaginal birth after prior cesarean section deliveries.

Likewise, many doctors are eager to avoid repeat cesarean sections in order to decrease the increasing cesarean section rate, now at approximately 31% (due to several factors, including medical advancements that allow us to save babies who are at risk). Traditionally, the most common indication for cesarean section is a prior cesarean section.

In fact, many women who have had a previous birth by C-section section can attempt a VBAC. A vaginal birth reduces the recovery time associated with a C-section. However, VBACs have risks of their own. If a physician fails to properly manage the risks associated with a VBAC and the mother or child is harmed because of the doctor’s error, the case should be evaluated for a possible medical malpractice claim.

The Ohio VBAC attorneys at The Becker Law Firm in Cleveland and Elyria, Ohio have gained significant settlements for clients injured in VBAC negligence cases. We offer a free initial consultation to discuss your case and advise you of your legal options.

Schedule your free case evaluation by calling our firm at (440) 252-4399.

Why VBACs Are Risky

VBACs are risky because the woman’s uterus already has a scar on it from the previous C-section. The stresses of labor can cause the uterus to tear along the C-section scar. Called a uterine rupture, this is a medical emergency that places mother and child at risk.

The trials of labor after a previous cesarean are only recommended under certain circumstances. And, even when a mother elects to attempt a VBAC, obstetrical caregivers must recognize that there is a much lower threshold for intervention for a VBAC patient than for a woman who has never had a C-section. Doctors must pay careful attention to the fetal monitoring strips and be ready to order a C-section if there are indications of fetal distress.

A vaginal birth after cesarean section carries with it numerous risks. These include:

Many women who want the natural childbirth experience find midwives who proclaim that VBAC is safe. In some cases, it is. However, some midwives are overeager to offer this type of delivery to their patients, despite being ill-equipped to deal with emergencies.

Women who trust midwives to deliver their babies with a VBAC should ensure that the delivery occurs close enough to a hospital in case an emergency cesarean delivery is necessary.

When Is a VBAC Safe?

There are very specific medical guidelines as to when vaginal birth after cesarean delivery can be performed. First, the patient and the physician must agree that it is safe. Second, the prior cesarean section must have been either a Kerr (low transverse incision) or Kronig (low vertical incision). Third, a VBAC is not usually permitted when the mother has diabetes, is carrying multiple babies, or has high blood pressure.

Most importantly, there should be staff on hand who are capable and ready to both monitor the condition of the baby before delivery and perform an emergency cesarean section.

Medical Provider Negligence in VBAC Cases

Some of the negligence that we prove in VBAC injury cases includes:

  • Acceptance of patients: medical providers must know when patients are not proper candidates for VBAC and must not offer it to some patients.
  • Informed consent: medical providers must adequately disclose the risks associated with VBAC.
  • Failing to properly assess, diagnose and treat the condition of the mother when other signs indicate a cesarean delivery is necessary.
  • Failing to ensure that the birth is accomplished in a hospital setting where emergency delivery of the infant can be timely accomplished.
  • Failure of a hospital or birth center to adequately hire, train, credential, and/or supervise agents, servants, and employees.
  • Failing to have in place and/or follow adequate policies and/or procedures regarding acceptance criteria for patients who desire VBAC.
  • Failing to have in place adequate and appropriate policies and/or procedures regarding the acceptance of, care, and treatment of patients undergoing vaginal birth after cesarean section (VBAC).
  • Failing to have in place and/or follow adequate policies and/or procedures regarding emergency delivery of babies.
  • Failing to have in place and/or follow adequate policies and/or procedures regarding the electronic fetal monitoring.
  • $13.5 Million Birth Injury

    Becker Law Firm attorneys Michael Becker and David Skall obtained a jury verdict for $13.5 million in Akron, Ohio. The case involved a now 16- year-old boy who suffered a brain injury at the time of birth (specifically a watershed injury). The doctor held liable for causing the boy’s injury is Laura Fortner, M.D., previously of Atrium OB/GYN, Inc.

    • David W. Skall
    • Michael F. Becker
  • $4.5 Million Birth Injury

    Failure to Carefully Ligate Umbilical Cord, Resulting In Severing Child’s Great Toe, Major Fluctuation In Child’s Blood Pressure And Subsequent Brain Damage (Cerebral Palsy & Developmental Delays)

    • Michael F. Becker
  • $4.25 Million Birth Injury

    Failure of Obsterical Caregivers to Recognize Maternal Hemorrhage Resulting in Brain Damage

    • Michael F. Becker
  • $4 Million Birth Injury

    Failure to provide intra-partum and immediate post-partum antibiotics.

  • $3.14 Million Birth Injury

    Failure to perform timely cesarean section which resulted in severe birth asphyxia.

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    Your unwavering dedication and expert guidance have truly been a lifesaver. Your sharp legal mind and compassionate heart have made all the difference. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for being there for us every step of the way. We are forever grateful Words cannot express our gratitude for everything you have done for us. Your outstanding professionalism, attention to detail, and commitment to justice have been nothing short of remarkable. You have given us back our confidence and hope during a difficult time. Thank you for being our champions. Thank you so much.

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    We were greeted with professionalism, expertise, compassion, respect, and a desire to provide the best quality of life for our daughter. She was always the top priority. Mr. Becker represented our daughter and family as if it was his own. His staff was equ
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    "Mike represented us as if he was fighting for his own family member. I knew that my son was getting the best representation in Northeast Ohio."
    It was an honor having such an experienced lawyer handle my son's cerebral palsy case. He represented us as if he was fighting for his own family member. Everyone at the firm made us feel comfortable about our case. I knew that my son was getting the best representation in Northeast Ohio. The Becker Law Firm is dedicated to bringing justice to their clients. I've already referred families that I know!
    - Knyesha Washington
    "David worked our case with professionalism and patience in an amazing way that ultimately led to a positive outcome."
    Right from the very beginning of our case, David Skall and his assistant Jean Witt were both extremely kind and compassionate to help us put closure on a wrongful death case involving my father at a care facility. They were quick to answer any questions that we had and they made sure we were kept in the loop of this entire process. even though we were in the middle of a pandemic, David and his team were able to adapt their technology and make it all work out for our benefit. I would strongly recommend them to anyone in need of legal help.
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    Contact Us for a Free Case Evaluation

    Obstetricians, midwives, and other healthcare providers must carefully evaluate whether a woman who has had a previous cesarean section is an appropriate candidate for a VBAC. Even in the best of cases, they have an obligation to warn their patients about the risks. Negligence by a woman’s health care team during the VBAC process can cause a variety of injuries to the mother and the baby.

    If you believe you have a medical malpractice claim, contact our VBAC lawyers in Ohio at (440) 252-4399 or online for a free consultation.


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