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What to watch for during a forceps delivery

Babies who are delivered with the assistance of forceps may experience minor injuries. Typically, these injuries involve bruises or marks around the head, and a baby could be scratched by the device as well. Mothers in Texas and elsewhere could also be injured if forceps are needed to complete a delivery. While most injuries heal over time, this is not always true.

For instance, if a baby is scratched, it could leave him or her vulnerable to infection. If a mother has HIV, the baby could be at risk of contracting it through an open wound. Mothers can also experience infection if the walls of the bladder or rectum are penetrated during a forceps delivery. Incontinence could be a side effect that mothers face after a delivery involving forceps.

Another possible risk to the baby is permanent facial paralysis if the forceps press too hard on the facial nerve. Surgery could be required to relieve pressure on facial nerves to ensure that the paralysis is only temporary. Furthermore, too much pressure on the baby's skull could lead to a fracture and bleeding that may cause permanent brain damage. In rare cases, the baby's skull and spine could separate, which could cause long-term damage to the child.

If a mother or baby experiences birth injuries, it may be possible to take action against a medical professional. Multiple parties may be liable for injuries. In a lawsuit or settlement, compensation might be granted to provide for an injured party's current and future medical bills. A financial award may also be granted to cover any future earnings that the mother or child might experience because of a medical professional's error. Legal counsel may be helpful during the legal process.

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