$3.875 Million Settlement For Infant’s Brain Injury When Pediatrician Failed to Consider That Child
A mother who is a carrier of the Group b strep may pass on the bacteria to her child during labor even if the mother is asymptomatic. Research have shown that between fifteen to forty percent of expecting mothers are carriers of group b strep. Lacking treatment, an infant born to a woman who with GBS has a one in two-hundred possibility of developing a Group B Strep infection. By administering appropriate antibiotics in the course of labor the chance of the mother transmitting the group b strep bacteria to her baby is decreased by 2,000%.
To be able to decide which women require antibiotics while in labor, expecting mothers without any symptoms are screened for GBS approximately from the 35th and 37th week of the pregnancy. Undergoing testing for group b streptococcus is a straightforward procedure. Given that the bacteria mostly colonizes inside the urinary and vaginal tract of the expecting mother, a swab is used to obtain a sample. The results of the test are frequently accessible within forty-eight hours.
In case an infant develops a gorup b strep infection and is not treated in a timely basis, the infection could develop into pneumonia, sepsis or meningitis. Because an infant’s immune systems is not totally developed, the infant may be left with lifelong physical and neurological damage that may prevent the child from ever living a normal life. And of the approximately seven thousand six hundred newborns who are estimated to be infected this year with GBS ten to fifteen percent do not survive.
Given the significant danger a GBS infection poses for infants, doctors treating a baby who has signs consistent with a GBS infection and whose mother tested positive during the pregnancy need to include it in their differential diagnosis. Consider, for instance, a sent to lawsuit in which a child, born to a woman whose GBS screening test had come back positive earlier in the pregnancy during the pregnancy, started to display signs consistent with a Group B Strep infection shortly after birth. But, the treating physician failed to match the symptoms in the infant’s postnatal record with the prenatal chart which contained information that mother had tested positive for the bacteria during the pregnancy. Hence, the correct diagnosis was came late and antibiotics were not administered right away.
Due to the delay, the newborn sustained brain damage. The law firm that helped the family announced that they were able to reach a settlement for the family for $750,000 with the physician and $3,125,000 with the hospital.
Babies can acquire a GBS infection even tough antibiotics were administered to the mother while in labor. Research conducted recently also showed that there are a number of babies who develop the infection regardless of whether the mother tested negative. Physicians thus should consider it as part of their differential diagnosis whenever a baby displays signs consistent with Group B Strep . As this lawsuit illustrates The failure to check the prenatal chart and to consider Group B Strep might result in liability for medical malpractice.