Posted On: March 22, 2012 by Moseley Collins

Woman Sues Hospital After Birth Injury Results in Cerebral Palsy, Part 3 of 3

The following blog entry is written to illustrate an example of a birth injury case. Reviewing this kind of lawsuit should help potential plaintiffs and clients better understand how parties in personal injury cases present such issues to the court.

(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this birth injury lawsuit and its proceedings.)

Plaintiff alleged that defendant anesthesia group failed to have a system in place for adequate response time to a request for a C-section that was called at 8:06 a.m. The perinatal hypoxia was caused by a small placenta as a result of the mother's SLE, which caused growth retardation in utero. As a result, the fetus was not able to tolerate labor due to placental insufficiency. Delivery prior to 8:00 a.m. would have resulted in a normal outcome.

The defense contended that all care was within the standard. The FMS abnormalities improved after 5:15 a.m. and did not require a call for a C-section before 8:00 a.m. After that, the fetal heart rate improved, and it was appropriate to use a re-bolused epidural for anesthesia. The small placenta likely caused micro-emboli to the baby's brain, with antibodies from the mother's SLE contributing to the brain injury. The severity of the baby's condition, including temperature instability, would give a life expectancy of less than eight additional years. Collateral sources would continue to pay for care in the future.

CLAIMED INJURIES
According to Plaintiff: Cerebral palsy; microcephaly.

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.

CLAIMED DAMAGES
According to Plaintiff: Medi-Cal lien of $140,000, plus $30,000 other medical expenses; $7 million future medical care (per plaintiff), based on life expectancy of 20 years; $1.5 million future medical care (per defense), based on life expectancy of eight additional years; $800,000 future loss of earnings (per plaintiff); $300,000 future loss of earnings (per defense).

SETTLEMENT DISCUSSIONS
According to Plaintiff: Mediation on December 5, 2007 resulted in no offer, but it was discovered that the registry had more than $1 million insurance coverage, despite form interrogatory answers to the contrary. A second mediation on February 13, 2008, with an offer of $3.5 million, which was rejected. All parties then proceeded through multiple expert depositions, with a trial date of April 22, 2008. The defense offer was increased to $5 million, then to $6 million, which was rejected. A separate offer of $250,000 from the anesthesiologist was accepted, and, one week before trial, the medical center offered $5.25 million and the registry offered $2.5 million, for a total of $8 million cash, which was accepted. After this settlement was accepted, the perinatologist offered an additional $200,000 for a dismissal of any remaining claims.

SUMMARY:
Verdict/Judgment: Settlement
Verdict/Judgment Amount: $8,200,000

For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.