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Baltimore Medical Malpractice Lawyers > Newborn Brain Injury Due To Negligent Care

Newborn Brain Injury Due To Negligent Care

Lawsuit Against Baylor Scott & White Medical Center – Hillcrest

On February 22, 2022, WVFK&N attorneys Keith Forman and Myles Poster filed a medical malpractice claim on behalf of a newborn baby who suffered an avoidable brain injury.

The complaint alleges that the mother presented to Baylor Scott & White Medical Center – Hillcrest at approximately 06:15 on March 28, 2020. The mother was at 36 weeks 6 days gestation. The mother’s temperature at 06:38 was noted to be febrile at 100.9 degrees Fahrenheit. An initial cervical examination revealed that the mother was 5 cm dilated, 80-90% effaced, and -2 fetal station. Initial fetal heart rate monitoring was connected at 06:28 and was reported as showing a baseline of 150 bpm, good variability, active accelerations, absent decelerations, and Category I – consistent with a well-oxygenated and neurologically intact fetus. The tocodynamometer was also reported as showing regular contractions occurring every 2 minutes. At 08:57, a sterile vaginal examination revealed that the mother was 6 cm dilated, 100% effaced, and -2 station. At 09:30, a nurse documented the onset of fetal tachycardia with a baseline of 165 bpm, absent accelerations in the fetal heart rate, early decelerations, and minimal variability. Continued fetal tachycardia with minimal variability was reported at 09:45 (175 bpm) and 10:00 (175 bpm). At 09:53, the nurse documented notifying the doctor with the reason listed for notification being “fetal baseline change.” At 10:04, the nurse again reported notifying the doctor this time for maternal vital sign change as the mother’s oral temperature was 102.4 degrees Fahrenheit. At 10:06, the doctor noted that the mother was now 6 cm dilated, 100% effaced, and -2 fetal station. He also reported that the fetal heart rate baseline was 175 bpm, “reactive” with contractions every 2 minutes. At 10:15, the nurse noted continued fetal tachycardia with absent accelerations, reported early decelerations, and minimal variability. Following a bedside examination, the nurse documented fetal tachycardia and absent variability at 10:45. A fetal heart rate baseline of 180 bpm was also reported with contractions continuing every 2 minutes. At 11:10, the nurse authored a progress note indicating that the mother had a temperature of 102.4 degrees Fahrenheit taken orally and that the doctors were “notified and aware.” From 11:00 until 11:45, the nurse continued to record persistent fetal tachycardia with a fetal heart rate baseline ranging from 175-180 bpm with periods of both minimal and absent variability. The nurse continued to document fetal tachycardia through 12:24 at which time the electronic fetal heart rate monitoring was discontinued, and the mother was transferred to another room. At 12:56 the nurse documented discussing pushing efforts with the mother which began around 1:00 p.m. Shortly after this examination, the nurse documented a fetal heart rate baseline of 170 bpm, minimal variability, and early/variable decelerations at 1:00 p.m. Variable decelerations were reported at 1:15 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. Variable decelerations and a reported fetal heart rate baseline of 160 bpm were noted again at 1:45 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. The baby was delivered via spontaneous vaginal delivery at 2:25 p.m. At the time of birth, the baby was limp and severely depressed with Apgar scores of 1, 5, and 7 at one, five, and ten minutes of life, respectively. The baby required immediate neonatal resuscitative efforts before being transferred to the NICU. Initial arterial blood gas results showed metabolic acidosis. During her admission, providers listed a “known diagnosis of suspected perinatal hypoxic injury with subsequent neonatal encephalopathy and neonatal seizures.” A brain MRI was interpreted as being consistent with the sequela of hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy. Today, the child continues to suffer from the neurological sequela of her hypoxic-ischemic brain injury including, but not limited to, microcephaly, cerebral palsy, cortical vision impairment, and global developmental delays all of which require a lifetime of continuous medical, therapeutic, and attendant care and treatment.

The lawsuit alleges that the baby’s brain injuries are a result of the negligence of Baylor Scott & White Medical Center – Hillcrest and their employees in failing to timely respond to concerning clinical signs and appropriately deliver the baby.

The action is pending in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division.

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