Houston Cephalohematoma Attorneys
A cephalohematoma is a birth injury that occurs to the child’s head and causes an accumulation of blood between the skull and skin of the baby’s scalp. If your child has suffered this type of injury, the effects may not be serious. If they are, however, we are here to assist you in recovering the compensation you and your child deserve.
Doctors and medical providers are required to treat patients according to the standard of care. Often cephalohematoma occurs during a difficult labor when a doctor has choices about how to proceed. If your doctor failed to make the appropriate choice or anticipate that something could go wrong, contact our Houston cephalohematoma lawyers at (713) 352-7071 for a free consultation on the potential value of your case.
Do I Need a Cephalohematoma Lawyer?
If your child has a cephalohematoma injury, it may be difficult to prove that your case entitles you to compensation. A knowledgeable attorney will be able to evaluate your case and hire necessary medical experts to understand the full extent of your child’s injuries. With this information at hand, a lawyer can use their skills to negotiate a settlement or pursue a lawsuit in court.
This is a complex area of law that is best not to attempt to navigate on your own. You will have to understand both the law and complex medical information in order to succeed. And after your child is injured, you need to spend your time caring for them, not teaching yourself the law. Let a lawyer handle your claim for you. While you take care of your family, your lawyer can gather evidence, negotiate with insurance, and prepare your claim for trial on your behalf.
Why Choose Williams Hart to Handle My Case?
Choosing a lawyer to represent you is a personal matter, and you want to feel comfortable with the attorneys and firm you pick. At Williams Hart, we are dedicated to negotiating and litigating with your best interests in mind. We pride ourselves on effectively handling cases of all sizes and making the process as easy as possible for you.
For over twenty-five years, the lawyers at Williams Hart have been obtaining significant results for clients like you. Our partners are highly decorated and deeply involved in the community. Both managing partner John Eddie Williams, Jr. and John T. Boundas graduated first in their law school classes. In addition to being members of the Texas Trial Lawyers Association and other organizations, partners John Eddie, John, and Jim S. Hart have frequently been named as Super Lawyers by Thomson Reuters. Each partner and associate brings a high level of excellence to the personal injury legal field.
When you contact us about your case, we offer a free consultation to evaluate the potential value of your claim. If we believe that you have grounds for a medical negligence case, we will never charge a fee to you up front. We complete all work on a contingency basis so that you only pay us a portion of the compensation you receive if you recover.
What is Cephalohematoma?
Cephalohematoma is a birth injury to the head that is often caused by tools, such as forceps and vacuums, that are used to aid the delivery process. It is relatively common, and cases of this type of injury usually heal without intervention. The basic injury is an unusual pooling of blood under the skin of the baby’s scalp. A cephalohematoma occurs above the skull and beneath the skin, rather than within the brain.
What Causes Cephalohematoma Injuries?
A cephalohematoma injury is caused by pressure to the infant’s head during delivery. This causes blood vessels to burst beneath the scalp. Pressure on the scalp can occur through natural means, such when the child is too large to fit through the birth canal and gets pressed against the mother’s pelvic bone. Long labors can cause pressure on the head since the baby is not moving quickly through the birth canal. Additionally, the use of tools such as forceps to guide the child through the birth canal or vacuums to speed up the delivery are the most frequent causes.
Forceps are a tool with a hinge between two sides that are designed to fit around the baby’s head during delivery. These must be used with extreme care to not injure the child. A vacuum extractor has a suction cup that is attached to a vacuum cup. The cup fits on the infant’s head while the doctor attempts to guide the child through the birth canal. Forceps and vacuum extractors can both be used safely. However, in cases where a doctor uses one of them incorrectly or aggressively, cephalohematoma can result.
Complications of Cephalohematoma
On its own, cephalohematoma often does not cause serious complications and resolves relatively quickly. However, cephalohematoma can cause jaundice in a child due to the accumulation of blood, which reduces the child’s available red blood cells. Without as many red blood cells, a baby may experience unusually high levels of bilirubin in the blood. A baby born with cephalohematoma may have a higher risk of jaundice. It is critical to treat jaundice, because in the most serious cases, it can lead to permanent brain damage or cerebral palsy.
In some rare cases, cephalohematoma may create a risk of serious infection. If a medical professional chooses to drain the blood from the site of the cephalohematoma, the risk of infection typically increases. This can be very dangerous since an infection could invade the bone of the skull. Anemia is another complication of cephalohematoma. When someone is anemic, it means that there is a lack of red blood cells in the body. A reduced number of red blood cells from cephalohematoma can cause issues with proper levels of oxygen, and may require immediate treatment. It is important to be aware that sometimes a child is diagnosed with only a cephalohematoma when the child actually has a more serious underlying condition that co-occurred or caused the cephalohematoma. If your child was misdiagnosed, you may be able to pursue a medical malpractice claim.
How is Cephalohematoma Treated?
In mild cases of cephalohematoma, no treatment other than observation is necessary. Several weeks after delivery, the cephalohematoma should be healed. In the meantime, doctors and other medical professionals will monitor the infant to make sure that jaundice and anemia do not present themselves. When there is concern about an underlying dangerous condition such as a hemorrhage under the skull, a CT scan can be an excellent diagnostic tool.
In cases where jaundice is present, phototherapy (exposure to certain types of light) may be used. In more severe cases of jaundice, certain intravenous therapies or blood exchange transfusions may be used to prevent further damage. If anemia becomes a concern, the child may also receive intravenous therapy or transfusions.
Negligence and Compensation in a Cephalohematoma Matter
When the actions of your doctor or other medical provider are at issue, your attorney must prove medical negligence. Doctors are expected to treat you according to a medically accepted standard of care. If they did not do so, and your child suffered a cephalohematoma injury as a result, you may deserve compensation. In matters involving a cephalohematoma, you will want to pay particular attention to whether your doctor failed to diagnose a more serious underlying condition, drained the area when this was inappropriate, or failed to appropriately treat jaundice or anemia arising from the injury. If you are unsure whether your case qualifies as malpractice, contact a lawyer right away.
In a number of cephalohematoma injuries, a doctor may be able to prevent the condition from arising. Once it does occur, it is of the utmost importance that the doctor appropriately treat the complications to avoid further serious injury. If your doctor has not done so, you may be entitled to recover damages.
Damages in a birth injury case involving cephalohematoma may include out-of-pocket expenses plus more intangible or hard-to-measure costs such as pain and suffering. Medical expenses, including procedures and treatments, appointments, and any other necessary costs to treat cephalohematoma or related complications may be reimbursed. If you had to take time off from work to care for your infant because of your doctor’s negligence, compensation for this would also be included in your award. Pain and suffering can be compensated as well, in all forms, whether physical, psychological, or both.
If your child has had a cephalohematoma and the doctor failed to treat it or serious complications from it, do not hesitate to contact us to learn more about how we can help you.
If your child developed a cephalohematoma or serious complications due to the negligence of a medical professional, you may be entitled to financial compensation. When you consult with one of our Houston birth injury lawyers, we will provide you with the best options for your case. You can have peace of mind that you are doing everything in your power to get the best results. Contact us on this website or by calling (713) 352-7071 today!