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What are My Rights if Birth Injuries Caused My Child’s Klumpke’s Palsy?


As a generic term, palsy refers to various types of paralysis accompanied by weakness, lack of control, and loss of sensation at the affected area of the body. You may be familiar with Erb’s palsy and cerebral palsy as some of the top medical conditions that result from birth injuries, and these are certainly a concern for any parent. However, there is another – very rare – condition that is very similar in some ways: Klumpke’s palsy. A publication from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) describes this condition as a type of brachial plexus injury, but one which is different from Erb’s palsy.

Because it is so rare, many parents hesitate to exercise their legal rights when malpractice by health care providers leads to Klumpke’s palsy. Not taking action could be a mistake, especially considering the possibility that your child will suffer life-long complications. You should discuss your remedies with a Miami birth injury lawyer, but some general information may be useful.

Signs and Symptoms of Klumpke’s Palsy: This medical condition results from the tearing or stretching of the brachial plexus, a network of nerves in the shoulder that transmit messages from the spinal cord to the arms and hands. Whereas Erb’s palsy affects the upper end of this network, Klumpke’s palsy involves trauma to the lower brachial plexus. The most common and obvious sign of this injury in infants is the “claw” hand, in which the forearm points outward and the wrists and fingers are highly flexed. In addition, you should note:

  • Weakness or loss of movement in the hand or arm
  • Decreased sensation in the affected arm
  • Lack of reflex activity
  • Stiffness in the joints

How Birth Injuries Lead to Klumpke’s Palsy: As a parent, you should feel some relief knowing that your baby may recover from this medical condition within six months – and without major surgery. However, the prognosis is not as positive when the brachial plexus suffers a tear, either of the nerves themselves or the nerves from the spine. Symptoms may be more significant and could lead to permanent disability of the arm, hand, or fingers.

Though Klumpke’s palsy is linked to difficult and prolonged delivery, errors by health care providers may also be to blame. Some of the most common birth injuries that lead to this condition include:

  • Improper use of forceps, vacuum extractor, or other birth assistive devices
  • Failure to order a timely C-section
  • Mishandling the infant through a breech or other abnormal birth position

When birth injuries are the cause of Klumpke’s palsy or other medical conditions, parents may qualify to recover compensation for such losses as medical costs, pain and suffering, and others.

Reach Out to Our South Florida Birth Injuries Attorneys About Your Options

To learn more about your rights after birth injuries cause Klumpke’s palsy or other harm to your baby, please contact Freidin Brown, P.A. We can schedule a free consultation at our offices or by videoconference. Once our birth injuries lawyers review your situation, we can advise you on legal remedies for recovering compensation.



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