A lawsuit was filed against a physician, the assistant, and the hospital where a child was born and treated because of an alleged negligence and failure to identify jaundice in time. This led to the newborn child developing a condition called kernicterus. The case against the physician and hospital was successful, and the jury verdict was $6.25 million. An experienced New York birth injury attorney can help out in similar cases in New York City and surrounding areas.
Kernicterus is a serious condition and a very rare type of brain damage that newborns experience. It happens when bilirubin, a substance in the blood, goes up to abnormally high levels. If left unchecked, it can cause long-term brain damage, sometimes even permanent. The condition is caused by another condition called jaundice, which is itself a quite common condition in newborns and appears as a yellow tint to the whites of the eyes of a baby as well as to the skin. If there is jaundice, this means that there is too much bilirubin in the blood and if this is undetected and untreated, it can soar to high levels, thus leading to kernicterus.
Kernicterus can lead to major brain damage, hearing loss, and in severe cases, death. It is important for medical personnel to be able to identify early signs of jaundice and be able to treat it before it gets out of hand and bilirubin levels start getting higher. In the case mentioned earlier, it was proven that medical negligence led to the child developing kernicterus and the plaintiff received a large jury award.
Millions of babies are born in the United States yearly, and of those, thousands result in birth injuries. Such injuries could take place during the labor process and delivery up to the time following the delivery. These are usually caused by failure to detect signs of infections or injury from birth, which may lead to other potentially more serious injuries.
Birth injuries affect the family in the long term because the injuries can be life-long, along with continual treatment and therapy. Anyone who has experienced a birth injury due to medical negligence has the right to receive compensation for the cost of caring for the child. He/She can seek help from New York birth injury attorneys, such as those from the Law Offices of Joseph Lichtenstein, who have experience with birth injury cases.