Maternal Sepsis Birth Injuries
Maternal birth injuries as a whole encompass a variety of traumas, often leaving mothers or surrogates with both physical and psychological negative effects. Among the more dangerous of these is maternal sepsis, a potentially fatal blood infection. Unfortunately, it is among the most common birth-involved deaths affecting mothers and surrogates. In fact, sepsis was the second leading cause of pregnancy-related death in the U.S. between 2014 and 2017 according to the CDC.1
Severe sepsis and septic shock are two complications that can occur, increasing the level of infection severity and the potential for death.2
The following are common questions regarding maternal sepsis:
What causes sepsis in mothers or surrogates?
Bacterial infections are the most common cause of sepsis, although viruses, fungi, and parasites can cause it as well.2 Causes in pregnant individuals include:1,2,3
* Bacteria in maternal birth canal
* Improperly treated delivery-related skin tears or cuts (Cesarean sections, episiotomies)
* Infected amniotic fluid
* Urinary tract infections (UTIs)
* Miscarriages or abortions
* Exposure to infection in a hospital, birthing center, or home
* Exposure to Escherichia coli, Listeria, Group B strep, other strep bacteria
* Various causes of poor maternal or surrogate health, particularly in high-risk cases
When can sepsis occur in a mother or surrogate?
Before birth and during or after delivery (postpartum sepsis).
What are some symptoms of maternal sepsis?
There are a number of symptoms indicative of maternal sepsis, including:4
* Fever and/or chills
* Dizziness and/or changes in mental state
* Lower abdominal pain
* Foul-smelling vaginal discharge
* Vaginal bleeding
* Increased heart rate
* Feelings of discomfort or illness
What are some risk factors for contracting maternal sepsis?
According to the Sepsis Alliance, the following are risk factors for contracting maternal sepsis:3
* First time births
* Invasive procedures during pregnancy
* Multiple births
When medical malpractice negligence is involved, individuals who have sustained maternal sepsis birth injuries generally seek direction, answers, and justice.
Regardless of the cause of a maternal sepsis birth injury, in cases of provable medical malpractice negligence, individuals often seek legal assistance. Proving medical malpractice negligence in maternal sepsis birth injury cases does create specific legal challenges. Effectively demonstrating that the current established standard of care was unmet and therefore resulted in injury to a pregnant mother or surrogate, or her infant, is essential. Hiring an expert attorney or legal team experienced in maternal sepsis birth injuries is important. Doing so can help to ensure maximum compensation is received, particularly when maternal sepsis-related required care and services will be continual.
Meeting with an experienced Florida maternal sepsis birth injury lawyer for an initial consultation to discuss your maternal sepsis birth injury is an important step toward both compensation and justice. It can be helpful to research information about lawyers who specialize in maternal sepsis birth injuries, or if possible, who specialize in the exact type of birth injury you have provably sustained.
Many lawyers and legal teams offer free initial consultations. At Mallard & Sharp, P.A., we specialize in a wide variety of birth injuries in Miami Florida including infant and maternal sepsis birth injuries. To schedule a free initial consultation with our expert legal team call 877.662.5527 or 305.461.4800.