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Common Causes of Erb’s Palsy Birth Injuries

By: Anapol Weiss

Erb’s palsy, a form of brachial plexus palsy, is a lifelong birth injury that causes weakness and loss of motion in the arm, wrist and/or hand. One to two of every 1,000 babies have been diagnosed with Erb’s palsy, but the condition is preventable.

Erb’s palsy can develop when a brachial plexus nerve is stretched so badly that it ruptures or tears from the root altogether. A nerve that sustains this type of damage will not heal on its own. Even if surgery is able to restore some function, a baby’s arm may not fully recover.

Irreparable brachial plexus birth injuries can occur during a difficult delivery involving a large (macrosomic) baby, a breech birth or a prolonged labor. The injuries can also result during a complicated birth in which an obstetrician must exert force to deliver the baby quickly.

Physicians can take action to prevent these problems from resulting in Erb’s palsy. In addition to performing an emergency caesarian section, there are specific delivery maneuvers that can aid in a successful delivery. Failure to act quickly can mean permanent consequences for a newborn.

We can help if your child developed Erb’s palsy because a physician did not adequately respond to a difficult birth. Filing a birth injury lawsuit can hold responsible parties accountable for their negligence, and it can help future babies and mothers from suffering the same physical and emotional distress.

Contact Anapol Weiss to speak with a birth injury attorney if your child was diagnosed with Erb’s palsy or suffered a brachial plexus injury at birth.