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What You Need to Know About Erb’s Palsy

Parent holding baby's hand | Erb’s Palsy | Vinkler Law Offices

Erb’s palsy is a type of birth injury that causes weakness in the arm and hand. Erb’s palsy is caused by damage to a nerve that runs from the neck to the arm, affecting muscle movement. In most cases, this can be treated with physical therapy; however, if it’s left untreated for too long or if other complications are involved, it may lead to permanent disability. When Erb’s palsy is the result of medical error or negligence during the birth process, parents may be able to pursue a medical malpractice claim.

What is Erb’s Palsy?

Erb’s palsy is a condition that occurs in infants when the brachial plexus, the area of nerves that controls forearm and hand movement, is damaged. Erb’s palsy typically occurs during birth due to negligent or substandard care.

In Erb’s palsy, there is damage to one or more of these nerves, and muscles of the arm may not be able to move normally because they are not getting enough blood supply. As a result, the affected arm may feel weak or floppy. In addition, the baby will not have good control over his fingers, which may appear small or curled, with some paralysis occurring at times, as well as loss of sensation in some parts of your child’s hand or wrist area.

It’s estimated that 1 out of every 1,000 babies are born with Erb’s palsy, but more cases are likely due to doctors not reporting these injuries or being unaware that they happened. In addition, injuries to the mother during delivery, forceps or vacuums that are too big or too small can also cause brachial plexus nerve damage, preventing babies from moving their arms and hands properly.

Treatment for Erb’s Palsy

The good news is that this condition can be treated through physical therapy if caught early enough in childhood. However, if left untreated for long periods, ] permanent mobility problems like spasticity (tightness) or hypertonia (stiffness) could result. Children with Erb’s palsy often grow up with limited mobility in their arms and hands, which impacts their quality of life and ability to perform tasks like tying shoes or playing sports at school once they get older.

Is Erb’s Palsy a Birth Injury?

Erb’s palsy is a birth injury resulting from a doctor applying excessive force to the baby’s head during a vaginal delivery due to negligent or substandard care. In 40-50% of cases, Erb’s palsy occurs during delivery when an infant does not receive enough oxygen during birth or experiences trauma due to forceps use or other complications like umbilical cord prolapse (when part of a baby’s umbilical cord comes out from around her stomach before she is born).

If you’ve experienced Erb’s palsy caused by medical negligence, you may be able to receive compensation for your child’s injury. By pursuing legal action, parents can pay for their child’s treatment to recover from their brachial plexus injury and hold hospitals and medical providers accountable for malpractice or negligence.

Seek Legal Advice from Experienced Birth Injury Attorneys

If you believe that your child’s Erb’s palsy is the result of medical negligence or if a healthcare provider’s medical error led to the development of Erb’s palsy, it is important to speak with a skilled birth injury attorney as soon as possible.

At Vinkler Law, our birth injury lawyers have the expertise and record of success to achieve results for you and your family. If you or your child has been injured or died due to negligent medical treatment during pregnancy, delivery, or aftercare, contact our Chicago birth injury attorneys for your free case review and confidential consultation.

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