Women in California or beyond who’ve had healthy pregnancies understand the discomfort that is typically part of the journey. From weight gain, heartburn and morning sickness to swollen ankles and other issues, women often encounter challenges and may not always feel well. Certain problems, though, could be a sign of fetal distress ,requiring an obstetrician (OB-GYN) or midwife to act quickly to avoid birth injuries.
Monitoring begins long before labor and delivery
Most women attend prenatal visits with an OB-GYN or midwife throughout a pregnancy. These visits may seem routine. However, they are necessary to closely monitor the health of mother and baby. A particular issue of importance is fetal heart rate.
If a baby’s heart rate is too low, it is a sign of fetal distress, and an OB-GYN or midwife would typically know what to do. A dramatic change in fetal movement patterns after 28 weeks of pregnancy is also a warning sign that a baby may be in distress. Numerous issues, such as too much or not enough amniotic fluid, late-term labor, maternal diabetes or problems with the umbilical cord may be associated with fetal distress symptoms.
Substandard medical care may result in birth injuries
Often, the only way to keep a baby safe and healthy when he or she has shown signs of fetal distress is to swiftly deliver the child by cesarean section. Every pregnant woman who receives professional medical care can expect that her OB-GYN or midwife understands the signs of fetal or maternal distress that would suggest reason to schedule a C-section or order one in an emergency situation. If an infant suffers birth injuries due to medical negligence after exhibiting signs of fetal distress, parents may seek restitution by filing a medical malpractice claim on behalf of their child.