When maternal infections are mismanaged or left untreated, they can cause serious and permanent birth injuries.
Maternal infections are defined as infections in a pregnant woman that can transmit through the placenta, blood, or birth canal during any stage of pregnancy or childbirth. If an infection is left undiagnosed, untreated, or mismanaged, serious and even permanent injuries and disabilities can result in the baby. Our Chicago birth injury lawyers explain the medical mistakes surrounding care for maternal infections that constitute medical negligence.
Chorioamnionitis is also known as intra-amniotic infection and is characterized by an inflammation or infection in the fetal membranes. Chorioamnionitis is most commonly caused by another infection when left untreated. Birth injuries associated with this maternal infection include preterm birth, premature rupture of membranes (PROM), meningitis, villitis, and sepsis.
Group B Streptococcus (GBS)
GBS is a common bacterium found in the female genital tract and intestines and is present in 1 in 4 pregnant women. It is harmless to the mother, but can cause infection, injury, and even death in a baby. Birth injuries and complications associated with this maternal infection include seizures, brain damage, premature birth, cerebral palsy, sepsis, intellectual and developmental disabilities, and meningitis.
Bacterial Vaginosis (BV)
BV is a common bacterial infection of the vagina that results from an imbalance of naturally occurring bacteria in women. Almost 1 in 4 women experience this infection during pregnancy and many women experience recurring infections. If not treated, BV can cause premature rupture of the membranes (PROM), premature birth, and infant brain damage.
Villitis is characterized by the inflammation of the chorionic villi surface of the placenta, which helps gas and nutrient exchange with fetal blood. Birth injuries associated with this condition include premature rupture of membranes and preterm birth, meningitis, intrauterine growth restriction, brain damage including cerebral palsy, sepsis, and death.
Urinary Tract Infections (UTI)
UTI is an infection of any of the urinary systems including the bladder, kidneys, and urethra. If left untreated, UTI can cause complications and severe and permanent birth injuries including premature birth, intrauterine infection, and neonatal infection. UTI can also lead to intrauterine growth restriction, low birth weight, anemia, preeclampsia, chorioamnionitis and fetal death.
Maternal Infections and Medical Malpractice
- Failure to diagnose a maternal infection in time.
- Failure to accurately identify and monitor the presence of a risk factor for a maternal infection.
- Failure to treat a maternal infection appropriately.
- Failure to closely monitor the pregnant woman and fetus when an infection is or was present.
- Failure to recognize the need to induce labor, deliver the baby, or order a C-section at the right time.
- Use of antibiotics that are or may be harmful to the mother or baby.
- Failure to perform a timely recurrence test after a maternal infection is treated.
If you and your child has been a victim of medical malpractice, a Chicago birth injury lawyer can help recover damages from the at-fault doctor. Call Willens Law Offices at (312) 957-4166 for a free consultation.