Lawsuit Alleging Pediatrician Failed To Timely Treat Baby With Group B Strep Settles For $6,150,

UnCategorized Group B Strep (GBS) poses a serious risk to newborns. Given a newborn’s still underdeveloped immune system, a GBS infection can quickly turn to pneumonia, sepsis or even meningitis. These can lead to severe injury or even to the death of the baby. As a result of this risk doctors generally agree that a baby who exhibits signs of infection by the GBS bacteria and who had exposure to the bacteria must be treated immediately. This article examines a medical malpractice lawsuit involving just this issue. In this reported case an expected mother was administered antibiotics during labor. This is the standard procedure when a pregnant woman tests positive for the bacteria during regular screening between the thirty-fifth and the thirty-seventh week in the pregnancy, at any other time during the pregnancy, or was positive for the bacteria during a prior pregnancy. In the sixth week after the baby was born the baby developed a high fever for which the mother took the baby to a pediatrician. The pediatrician failed to recognize that the baby had been exposed to GBS because the pediatrician did not read the prenatal care records. Given that she did not know that the mother had previously tested positive for GBS, the pediatrician did not administer antibiotics right away and instead merely ordered testing to figure out what was wrong with the baby. While the pediatrician waited for the results, the baby’s infection turned into meningitis. The baby had multiple strokes which resulted in an untreatable seizure disorder and in mental retardation. The law firm that handled the case obtained an admission from the pediatrician that antibiotics would have been administered immediately if she had realized that the baby had prior exposure to the bacteria. The case was reported as settled for $6,150,000. Babies with the infection at first tend to show symptoms that are non-specific for Group B Strep. This is a reason why doctors must consider it as a differential diagnosis when symptoms that could be from a GBS Infection are present in a baby. In the case above the pediatrician did not take a complete history from the mother and did not bother to review the prenatal records. The pediatrician thus based her plan on incomplete information. Without the critical piece of information the statistics indicated that the baby’s symptoms were from something else. She gambled on the statistics and the baby lost. When a baby presents with symptoms that turn out to be from a Group B Strep infection a doctor must act immediately in order to avoid the onset of sepsis, pneumonia or meningitis which can all lead to devastating results. If the doctor does not consider a GBS infection in the differential diagnosis and thus delays treatment with resulting tragic consequences the baby and his or her family may be able to successfully bring a medical malpractice claim to recover for the damages suffered by the baby and protect the baby’s future. About the Author: 相关的主题文章: