Baby after birth

Complications from Fetal Macrosomia

October 10th, 2018

A baby born weighing more than 8 pounds 13 ounces (or 4,000 grams) weighs significantly more than the average baby, and so meets the definition for macrosomia, or “big baby syndrome”, which carries with it the risk of injury during delivery.   If the baby’s birthweight is even greater – 9 pounds 15 ounces (or 4,500 grams) and above – the chance of injury during birth is even higher. Roughly 10% of all babies born within the United States are born with fetal macrosomia.

Among the greatest risks during delivery of a baby with macrosomia is the possibility the baby will be too large to safely navigate the birth canal and will suffer injury from complications such as shoulder dystocia (baby’s head emerges, but a shoulder remains trapped behind the mother’s pubic bone, preventing completion of delivery of the baby), brachial plexus injury (stretched or torn nerves in the baby’s affected shoulder and arm) and interruption in the baby’s supply of oxygen, which can cause permanent brain damage to the child.  There are also risks of injury to the mother delivering a baby with macrosomia, including excessive bleeding (hemorrhage) and uterine rupture.

A mother is at an increased risk of delivering a baby with fetal macrosomia if she has gestational diabetes (diabetes which begins during pregnancy); if she has previously given birth to a baby that had fetal macrosomia; if she gains more than the average amount of weight during her pregnancy; if her baby is born more than two weeks beyond the due date; or, if the expectant mother is over 35 years old.

Management of macrosomia includes delivery of the baby via C-section to prevent the baby from suffering a shoulder dystocia and related complications (nerve damage, loss of oxygen and/or permanent brain injury) of vaginal birth, or attempted vaginal birth, of a baby with macrosomia.

If your child suffered a birth injury, contact The Yost Legal Group today at 1-800-YOST-LAW (800-403-7259). The attorneys at Yost Legal Group are experienced, caring professionals ready to investigate your claim with compassion and determination. Call us today to receive a free, confidential consultation about your possible case.

We handle all cases on a contingency fee basis. This means you will never pay an attorney’s fee up front, and you owe us nothing unless we win your case.

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