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Alvin Wolff Jr. & Associates

St. Louis Birth Injury and Trauma Lawyers

The crib is assembled, the baby seat is installed, and the hospital bag is packed. After months of anticipation, the day has finally arrived for your baby to be born. You rush to the hospital, full of jitters, expecting a perhaps difficult but smooth delivery. Instead, things begin to go wrong and what should be one of the happiest days of your life quickly turns into a nightmare.

When your child is the victim of birth trauma or injury, the results can be devastating. Your newborn may require a long stay in the hospital and repeat visits to fix medical problems that should never have occurred in the first place.

As you watch in anguish while your baby suffers, you want nothing more than to get the help necessary to make sure your baby can become a healthy, growing child.

A birth injury lawyer can help you get the resources you need to ensure your child’s future. For a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your legal options, call Alvin Wolff at 314-241-2500 today.

When a Birth Goes Wrong, Birth Injury Can Result

Even the most routine pregnancy can take a turn for the worse in the birthing room. From the moment the doctor gives the first hint that something is a little “different” about your child’s birth, your heart starts to sink.

Any number of things can go wrong in the delivery room. Birth trauma can be caused by any of the following:

  • Delivering too fast
  • Delayed delivery
  • Attempting a vaginal delivery after a C-section
  • Strep B infection
  • Vacuum extraction or forceps
  • Baby too big or mother too small
  • Baby in a hard-to-deliver position
  • Unusually difficult labor
  • Using various methods accelerate the birth
  • Medication problems
  • Uterine rupture


The results of a traumatic birth can be devastating for both you and your child. All you wanted to do was to take your child home, happy and healthy. Now your new little one may be dealing with a serious injury that will require extra doctor visits and physical therapy, all in the first few months of life. Common examples of birth injuries include:

  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Klumpke’s Palsy (affects arms)
  • Erb’s Palsy (affects hands)
  • Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (oxygen deprivation)
  • Shoulder Dystocia (when shoulder doesn’t fit through birth canal)
  • Complications resulting from vacuum or forceps extraction


Our Experienced Birth Injury Attorneys Are Here to Help

If you believe your child’s injury or resulting trauma was the result of delay or negligence, you might be eligible for compensation to help with your child’s medical expenses. A skilled birth injury lawyer can help you determine if you have a case. To take back control of your child’s future, Alvin Wolff Jr. today at 314-241-2500. From our St. Louis headquarters, we’re able to serve all of Missouri and beyond.

Shoulder Dystocia Medical Malpractice Lawyer in St. Louis, Missouri

Shoulder dystocia occurs when a baby’s head has already exited the birth canal, but its shoulder gets caught behind the mother’s pubic bone. This condition can kill the baby through suffocation by closing off the umbilical cord. Even if the baby survives, permanent and severe injuries are often the result. The disabilities resulting from this condition can be extremely taxing on family finances. Since shoulder dystocia is often caused by medical malpractice, however, you may be able to secure compensation for these expenses as well as for the emotional trauma involved.


Medical Malpractice and Shoulder Dystocia


When the baby’s shoulder gets lodged behind the baby’s pubic bone, medical personnel must respond quickly and appropriately. In some cases, personnel are improperly trained or panic takes hold. Unfortunately, the result is tragic. Malpractice-related reasons for shoulder dystocia include:

  • Trying to force the baby out of the birth canal during an emergency

  • Failure to promptly and properly perform Rubin I, Rubin II, the McRoberts maneuver, the Wood’s screw maneuver, Jacquemer’s maneuver, or the Gaskin maneuver (methods for quickly dislodging the baby’s shoulder)

  • Inappropriate use of forceps or vacuum-assisted delivery

Injuries and Complications


Shoulder dystocia can cause the following medical conditions (among many):

  • Loss of muscle control in the hand, arm or wrist

  • Paralysis or numbness of the arm or hand

  • Cerebral palsy

  • Erb’s palsy


Shoulder dyctocia can also cause the mother to suffer serious medical complications such as vaginal hemorrhaging and rupture of the uterus.


Compensatory Damages


To the extent that shoulder dystocia was caused by medical malpractice, Missouri personal injury law allows the injured party or parties (both baby and mother if appropriate) to recover compensatory damages. Damages can include past, present and future medical bills; lost work time; incidental expenses; pain and suffering; mental anguish; and legal fees. Even if shoulder dystocia was not due solely to malpractice, Missouri personal injury law allows you to recover damages to the extent that malpractice was the culprit (55 percent, for example).


Wrongful Death Claims


If the baby dies as a result of shoulder dystocia, Missouri law allows the baby’s parent’s to file a wrongful death lawsuit. The parents may recover for medical bills, pain and suffering experienced by the baby, loss of the emotional benefits provided to the parent by the baby, and burial and funeral expenses.


Statute of Limitations


A medical malpractice lawsuit must be filed within two years of the date of the injury. If the injury is not immediately apparent, the two-year period does not start running until the date that injury is actually discovered. Normally, you cannot file a medical malpractice lawsuit more than 10 years after the injury actually occurred even if it takes that long to discover the injury.


When to Get Help


The time to seek legal help for suspected shoulder dystocia is immediately after you discover the injury, because cases take time to prepare and the Missouri statute of limitations is short. In fact, you may need an investigation by a lawyer to determine whether or not the injury was actually caused by medical malpractice. You will also need an experienced, dedicated lawyer to fight for you in court or at the settlement table.

Alvin Wolff offers his clients the benefit of over 36 years of practice in medical malpractice and personal injury, and he will work tirelessly to ensure that your child receives fair compensation for his injuries. Pick up the telephone and call 314-241-2500 right away for your free initial consultation.