Erb’s palsy, also called Erb-Duchenne palsy, is characterized by paralysis of the shoulder and upper arm. It occurs when the brachial plexus nerves, which extend from the spinal cord and into the neck, armpit, shoulder, and arm, are damaged in some way. They may be stretched, torn, or even pulled completely from the spinal cord. Depending on the extent and exact location of the damage, paralysis of the shoulder and upper arm (Erb’s palsy) or forearm and hand (Klumpke’s palsy) may result.
A forceful pulling or unnatural twisting of the shoulder and neck may cause brachial plexus injury that leads to Erb’s palsy or Klumpke’s palsy. This can be linked to a difficult childbirth, particularly in cases involving shoulder dystocia, where one of the baby’s shoulders becomes lodged behind the mother’s pubic bone in a vaginal delivery. In some cases, Erb’s palsy can be caused by obstetric negligence or malpractice. Mismanagement of shoulder dystocia or errors in an instrument-assisted delivery can cause preventable brachial plexus injuries.
Learn more about brachial plexus injuries and your right to compensation by calling a Philadelphia Erb’s palsy attorney at (215) 608-2183. We’re here to answer your questions and help you.
Risk Factors for Erb’s Palsy
There are certain factors that may increase a child’s risk of experiencing brachial plexus injury and therefore Erb’s palsy or Klumpke’s palsy. These are:
- Shoulder dystocia
- Large fetal size (macrosomia)
- Fetus too large to safely pass through birth canal (cephalopelvic disproportion)
- Excessive maternal weight gain
- Breech presentation
- Use of forceps or vacuum extractor during delivery
By carefully and meticulously investigating every aspect of your claim, our Philadelphia Erb’s palsy lawyers will work to determine whether your child’s condition could have been prevented, had standard medical care been provided. If negligence occurred, we will work to prove it so we can secure a fair settlement or award that will provide for your child’s care.
Contact Marciano & MacAvoy, P.C. today at (215) 608-2183 to learn how we can help you and your child.