Monthly Archives: January 2015

What risks are associated with forceps-assisted delivery?

During a vaginal delivery, doctors may need to use forceps in order to get the baby out. Most women in California will not require the use of forceps, and it is safer to deliver without the use of this special tool. Although there are some risks associated with forceps-assisted deliveries, there are rarely any lasting problems when they are carried out properly.

For babies, there are various risks that come with the use of forceps, most of which are not severe. These include bruises or bumps on the face that will heal quickly, injured nerves that will heal in a short amount of time, a swelled or cone-shaped head that will return to normal in a day or two, and cuts from the forceps, which rarely happens. The most serious risk associated with this type of delivery is bleeding within the baby’s head, but this is very rare.

For mothers, the risks are less varied. The potential consequences that come with using forceps are severe vaginal tears and issues with bowel movement and urinating after the delivery.

After a mother has been pushing and the cervix is fully dilated, there are various reasons a forceps-assisted delivery might be the best course of action. The mother might be too tired to continue pushing, or a medical issue might make pushing dangerous. Before this type of method is used, the mother will be given medicine and protection will be placed on the baby’s head.

If a mother or her baby is injured during delivery, it may be in her best interests to seek out compensation. Minor birth injuries are not uncommon, but if the harm done is severe or the result of negligence on the part of the doctor, a personal injury lawyer may be of assistance.

Pedestrian with cane hit, critically injured in California

A man walking along a sidewalk on a steep La Mesa street was struck and injured by a reversed pickup truck on Jan. 9. The 56-year-old pedestrian was using a cane.

According to La Mesa police, the accident happened around 7 a.m. when a large pickup truck was backing up onto Saranac Place near the 5000 block of Thorne Drive and rolled onto the sidewalk, hitting the man. The male pickup driver continued backing up before he realized that he had struck someone.

The pedestrian suffered internal injuries and numerous broken bones. He was transported to Sharp Memorial Hospital, where he was listed in critical condition.

Authorities said the pickup driver remained at the scene of the accident and has cooperated with police. The accident remains under investigation.

A pedestrian injured by a car may suffer critical injuries that require extended hospitalization and rehabilitation. If the medical bills are not covered by a victim’s insurance, they could be left with severe, ongoing financial burdens. If the victim is unable to work as they recover, it could also add stress to the situation.

If a pedestrian was injured due to the actions of a negligent driver, they may wish to consult with an attorney about filing a personal injury lawsuit against the person who hit them. An attorney could use accident reconstruction results and police reports to prove the at-fault driver was liable for the injuries suffered by the victim. If the victim prevails in court, they could be awarded compensation for their losses, including medical expenses, rehabilitation costs and lost wages. In some cases, the individual may also be paid damages for non-economic losses such as pain and suffering.

Source: La Mesa-Mount Helix Patch, “Cane Using Pedestrian Struck in La Mesa Critically Injured”, Mirna Alfonso, Jan. 9, 2015

Pedestrian accident dangers

Pedestrians in California and elsewhere are much more likely to suffer catastrophic personal injuries or to be killed if they are involved in an automobile collision. Statistics demonstrate that pedestrians have a greater risk than do car occupants of a fatality every time they go out, at a risk level of 1.5 times greater likelihood per trip as opposed to those in motor vehicles.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that 4,743 pedestrians died in motor vehicle crashes in 2012, with one pedestrian dying every two hours. An additional 76,000 suffered serious injuries, which equates to a pedestrian injury accident occurring every seven minutes. Those most at risk include the elderly and children. Of those killed, 20 percent were 65 or older, while elderly people accounted for 9 percent of all those injured. For children between the ages of five and 15, 20 percent who were killed in collisions were pedestrians.

A majority of pedestrian accidents occur in urban settings during nighttime hours. People are more difficult to see at night. Many of them happen at non-intersection locations. In order to decrease the likelihood of being hit by a car, pedestrians who walk at night should wear reflective clothing and carry a flashlight. Pedestrians should also only cross streets at intersections, preferably in marked cross walks.

A pedestrian injured by an automobile is more likely to have serious injuries than a person who is inside of a vehicle. Pedestrians do not have the protection afforded by being surrounded by a vehicle’s frame. When a pedestrian accident occurs due to a motorist’s negligence, the injured victim may want to consider filing a personal injury lawsuit. Through a personal injury lawsuit, the motorist may be held to be responsible for his or her actions, allowing the victim to recover damages for compensation.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Pedestrian Safety”, accessed on 1/12/2015

Bicyclist injured after New Year’s Day hit-and-run incident

According to an officer of the California Highway Patrol, around 5:30 p.m. on Jan. 1, a 49-year-old man on a bicycle was struck from behind by a vehicle on Airport Road in Anderson. The driver left the scene of the accident, and the bicyclist was discovered suffering from serious injuries. He was transported to a local hospital.

The CHP reported that the injured man had been riding the bike southbound without a rear light, and he was not wearing any safety gear at the time of the accident. There was no further word regarding the man’s specific injuries, but apparently the bicyclist does not recall the incident.

The preliminary investigation did not lead to any witnesses of this hit-and-run accident, and the CHP was asking for anyone who may have knowledge of the occurrence to contact them. However, it was reported that the driver who hit the bicycle rider may have been in a gray pickup truck, and the vehicle might have sustained front-end damage from the impact with the bike.

When a motor vehicle accident occurs, the investigation may be ongoing until the authorities find answers. In a case such as this one where the victim has no recollection of the accident and there are no initial witnesses, it may take some time before the case is solved unless the perpetrator or a witness comes forward.

An injury accident victim might decide to seek the assistance of a personal injury attorney. If a person suffers major injuries, he or she may incur damages like lost wages and medical expenses. Healing from serious injuries may require physical therapy or extensive rehabilitation time. An attorney could represent a victim in a civil lawsuit or help with insurance company negotiations.

Traumatic brain injuries lead to frequent hospitalization

California residents involved in car accidents and medical malpractice cases run the risk of suffering from traumatic brain injuries. Also known as TBI, such an injury is a type of medical condition that causes swelling of the tissues in and around the brain. Changes in behavior, depressive thoughts and confusion are a few of the symptoms of this condition.

According to some recent information, those suffering from this type of injury have a greater risk of spending more time in the hospital and going back to the hospital. Approximately 20 percent of all TBI patients will require some additional form of hospitalization in the future.

These injuries to the brain often occur when an individual strikes his or her head against the car during an accident or from the impact of the head against the airbag. Some patients also develop TBI after spending too much time under anesthesia or because of other problems that occur during a routine operation. Those diagnosed with TBI have a greater risk of requiring additional hospitalization within the first few years after the injury.

Traumatic brain injuries may be the fault of a doctor overseeing a patient in a hospital or a surgeon performing an operation on a patient. In these cases, the burden often falls on the lawyer representing the patient to explain what happened to the patient and how that injury affects his or her life. This often requires that an expert testify as to the injury and the patient’s prognosis.

In the case of a car accident that causes a brain injury, the lawyer may need to show evidence that determines who was at fault for the accident. Police officers and paramedics who were at the scene may testify for the plaintiff in court.

Source: Brain Injury Association of America, “Rehospitalization Rates: 20% for Individuals with Traumatic Brain Injuries“, December 30, 2014

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