Was this substance present when your water broke and now your baby has a brain injury? In other words, when your water broke, was there a greenish or yellowish substance in the fluid? In some cases, this substance will be present when a mother’s water is broken and as a result, doctors must pay close attention to mother and baby and use the tools available to help them understand whether the baby is tolerating the vaginal delivery.
Now you may be asking yourself, what is this substance? The medical name for this substance is called meconium. Meconium is essentially the baby’s stool. Although meconium is not in and of itself absolute proof that your baby is in fetal distress, it can be used as evidence of fetal distress combined with other factors.
WAS THIS SUBSTANCE PRESENT WHEN YOUR WATER BROKE?
When I speak with mothers who have questions regarding their baby’s brain injury, some of them report knowing that meconium was present due to information relayed to them by medical professionals. For some mothers, who have done “research” regarding labor beforehand they know the seriousness of the presence of meconium.
For one mother, who contacted my office, she had the presence of meconium in the fluid. The doctors told her that they would closely monitor the situation. With that said, the labor continued and to her, it seemed that she was pushing a lot. Eventually, the baby was born blue and was rushed to the NICU (a later review of the fetal heart strips showed that the baby was in serious trouble).
As we fast forward into time, not only had this baby suffered brain damage, but the baby was never able to meet neonatal milestones for children the same age.
WHY MUST DOCTORS PAY ATTENTION WHEN MECONIUM IS PRESENT?
Some defense experts for doctors and hospitals will try to minimize the presence of meconium staining in the fluid. However, some medical literature has come to an opposite conclusion, stating essentially that when meconium is in the fluid its presence should be used as an indication for fetal heart monitoring/and or scalp blood sampling to determine the presence of asphyxia.
Asphyxia at birth is problematic because this means that organs are not getting enough oxygen. When this occurs, the brain can suffer serious injury and can in some instances lead to a cerebral palsy diagnosis in the future.
Meconium can also lead to Meconium Aspiration Syndrome (MAS) in some babies. At birth doctors will look to see if meconium got below the cords. MAS can be deadly to children under certain conditions, especially given the fact that serious infections, among other things can result from MAS.
NEED TO TALK MORE ABOUT YOUR BABY’S BRAIN INJURY?
Was this substance present when your water broke? If meconium was present when your water broke and your baby has now suffered a brain injury, and you have questions about what the future may hold (mounting medical bills, the need for future medical treatment, baby’s lack of independence in the future, etc…), this is what I invite you to do. Pick up the phone and give me a call.
I can be reached at 301-850-4832. We listen to stories like yours all of the time and we would be glad to listen to yours.
Marcus B. Boston, Esq.
Boston Law Group, LLC
2 Wisconsin Circle
Chevy Chase, Maryland 20815