Obstetric Negligence Solicitors - Medical Compensation Claim Lawyer
Obstetrics is the study of prenatal care and delivery of one or more infants. Obstetricians care for women during their pregnancy, during childbirth and after the baby is born. Doctors who study obstetrics also study gynaecology and must be a medical doctor with several years of residency training before the doctor is considered capable of caring for women in the pregnant state.
Obstetric Negligence Solicitors
Our obstetric negligence solicitors deal with personal injury compensation claims arising from medical negligence by a healthcare practitioner. Our solicitors deal with obstetric claims using the no win no fee scheme. To speak to an obstetric medical negligence solicitor just email our lawyers offices or complete the contact form or call our solicitors helpline. Our obstetric negligence solicitors offer advice at no cost with no further obligation.
The work of an obstetrician begins with prenatal care. The doctor sees the woman, usually in her first trimester, and establishes the age of the pregnancy. This is done usually by doing a first trimester ultrasound, which can be as accurate as 5 days away from the actual due date. Screening is done for Rh factor and blood type, as well as for anaemia. Testing is done for Hepatitis B, STDs, cervical cancer and HIV. A group B streptococcus screen is done in the first and late third trimester because treatment for this condition can prevent neonatal sepsis in pregnancy. A test called chorionic villi sampling is done in the late third trimester or early second trimester to check for chromosomal abnormalities, including Down syndrome (trisomy 21) and trisomy 18.
In the second trimester, the patient sees the doctor once a month. Tests for alpha-foetoprotein are checked for neural tube defects and for chromosomal abnormalities. A haemoglobin test is done every visit to check for anaemia. If the parents want to know the gender of their foetus, a second trimester ultrasound is done about 20 weeks. An amniocentesis can be done around 18 weeks in order to check for chromosomal abnormalities.
In the third trimester, measurements are made to confirm an excellent size and weight of the baby. A glucose tolerance test or GTT is done by giving the woman a load of sugar water and determining the blood sugar. If it is too high, the patient may have gestational diabetes, which needs special attention in the pregnancy. In the third trimester, the symphysis to fundal height in centimeters is roughly equivalent to the gestational age in weeks. This is true from 20 weeks and on in the pregnancy. At each visit, the obstetrician listens to the heart beat and does the Leopold manoeuvre, which assesses the position of the baby. Blood pressure is assessed to make sure the patient doesn’t have preeclampsia of pregnancy (toxemia).
Obstetricians use ultrasound as the primary tool to assess the health and well being of the foetus. The amount of fluid around the foetus is important and the structure and function of the heart can be assessed. The foetus’ size and age are determined by ultrasound every time one is done. An ultrasound is also used to guide the needle when a chorionic villi sampling or amniocentesis is done. The health of the placenta can be assessed with an ultrasound.
An obstetrician can manage pregnancy-related emergencies, such as an ectopic pregnancy, when the pregnancy is in the Fallopian tubes. Pre-eclampsia is when there is high blood pressure and a danger of seizures in the third trimester. Abruption of the placenta is when the placenta breaks away from the lining of the uterus, causing bleeding and foetal distress. Foetal distress during labour needs to be addressed by the obstetrician by doing a prompt surgical delivery. Other foetal emergencies include uterine rupture, prolapsed cord, obstetrical haemorrhage and shoulder dystocia, where the shoulder of the baby gets stuck in the birth canal.
The obstetrician aids the woman in childbirth. Childbirth is the act of delivering the baby through the vagina or through a Caesarean section in some cases. The obstetrician can allow labour to begin or can induce labour using pitocin or oxytocin, among other medications. It is done if it is time to get the baby out, either because it is late or because the mass of the infant has reached a certain size. If the mother has certain medical diseases, the doctor may want to induce the baby early.
A caesarean section is done if there is foetal distress, a baby that is too large, a failure of labour or multiple foetuses. It is done by doing an incision in the lower abdomen and making an incision at the base of the uterus. The infant is delivered through the incision in the uterus. Doctors sometimes do a tubal ligation at the time of the caesarean. Alternatively, a tubal ligation can be done through an infraumbilical incision when the woman is not pregnant.
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The author of the substantive medical writing on this website is Dr. Christine Traxler MD whose biography can be read here