The Hartford Courant carries the story of the vaginal birth that should have been a Caesarean section. The result of the medical malpractice of the obstetrician is a lifetime of shoulder and arm impairment for the child. Shoulder dystocia is the medical term used to describe a mismatch between the mother’s pelvis and the size of the fetus. When it occurs and significant injury to the baby is the result of the delivery effort a careful review of the labor and delivery is warranted.
One medical source describes the problem in the following terms: Shoulder dystocia is an obstetrical complication that occurs in thousands of deliveries in the US each year. It has the potential for causing significant, lifelong injury to the newborns involved in such deliveries.
A young Windsor boy and his mother have secured what is believed to be the largest medical malpractice verdict ever in Connecticut for the type of injury he suffered during childbirth.
A Superior Court jury in Hartford Tuesday awarded $2.69 million to Tamar Earlington and her 4-year-old son, Omar Earlington Jr., after finding now-retired obstetrician Anthony Anastasi and F.A.L. Medical Associates liable for Omar’s disabilities.
Superior Court Judge Lois Tanzer added $800,000 in interest to the award, because Anastasi two years ago rejected a $1 million settlement offer proposed by the Earlingtons’ lawyer, Kathleen Nastri, of the Bridgeport law firm of Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder. That brought the total award to $3.49 million.
The lawsuit claimed that Anastasi failed to diagnose that Tamar Earlington had a small pelvis, failed to properly evaluate the pre-birth size of the fetus and used a vacuum extractor and excessive pressure to extract the baby, rather than performing a Caesarean section when the baby became lodged.
As a result, Omar suffered serious nerve damage to his right shoulder that severely impairs his arm movement.
Sadly, these events occur with some frequency in Florida. Our firm understands the medical preference for a vaginal delivery when the conditions are favorable, but cannot understand the breaches of the standard of care that often lead to a brachial plexus nerve injury (Erbs Palsy) when there is obvious shoulder dystocia.