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HomeSector InsightsInjury & NegligenceGadsby Wicks Successfully Resolves Case of Delayed Delivery Causing Cerebral Palsy

Gadsby Wicks Successfully Resolves Case of Delayed Delivery Causing Cerebral Palsy

Gadsby Wicks, a specialist medical negligence firm, has achieved a fair settlement for their client in a case involving delayed delivery that tragically resulted in a newborn being diagnosed with dystonic athetoid cerebral palsy and epilepsy.

Alan Mendham, a Partner at Gadsby Wicks and an experienced Medical Negligence Solicitor, led the case, utilizing his nearly two decades of expertise in this field.

The Case:

The details of the newborn and their family have been anonymised to protect their identity. The baby was delivered after a prolonged second stage of labour.

Unfortunately, the midwives involved in the birth failed to identify the delayed second stage and allowed it to continue for 3 hours without seeking assistance from an obstetrician or taking steps to expedite the delivery.

It was also revealed that the midwives attempted manual rotation twice without involving an obstetrician or initiating a CTG trace.

During delivery, the baby had a flat appearance, and the umbilical cord was loosely wrapped around their neck. The baby exhibited no respiratory effort.

Immediate assessment using an apgar test resulted in a score of 1 after 1 minute, 4 after 5 minutes, and 5 after 10 minutes. Cord gas results indicated pH levels of 6.961 BE 15.4 and pH 6.947 BE 15.4.

Paediatricians were called in, and the infant required resuscitation, ventilation, and experienced seizures shortly after birth.

The newborn has since been diagnosed with dystonic athetoid cerebral palsy and epilepsy, resulting in an inability to walk unaided or speak due to the birth injury. The child communicates through eye pointing and is fed via a PEG.

The Claim:

The claim was pursued based on the midwives’ failure to adequately monitor the foetal heart rate during both stages of labour.

It was discovered that the midwives failed to diagnose or document the commencement of the second stage of labour and did not recognize the prolonged duration of the second stage, which warranted an obstetric review.

Additionally, no obstetric review was conducted when the frequency of contractions reduced in the presence of maternal pyrexia, and the healthcare team did not initiate a CTG trace when necessary.

Furthermore, the midwives performed manual rotations incompetently and recorded the foetal heart rate inaccurately.

If the mother had received proper midwifery care, the infant would have been delivered earlier, thereby preventing the injury. Unfortunately, the newborn now suffers from quadriplegic dystonic cerebral palsy, intellectual impairment, and epilepsy.

The Result:

Legal proceedings were initiated after the Defendants initially denied breach of duty and causation. However, shortly before the exchange of expert evidence, it was agreed that judgement should be entered for the Claimant at 85% of the full value. The claim was settled shortly before trial following an investigation into the quantum.

“While no amount of compensation can ever fully compensate for the distress and harm caused, we are pleased to have provided the family with the answers, justice, and financial support they deserved,” stated Alan Mendham, the solicitor who led the claim.

“Through our team’s dedicated efforts, the claimant’s family now has the financial security to manage the challenges their child will face in the future.”

Gadsby Wicks remains committed to providing exceptional legal representation to those affected by medical mistakes, as the firm has recently witnessed a significant rise in medical negligence inquiries over the past 12 months.

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