Tachysystole refers to excessively frequent contractions during labor and delivery of a baby. It usually correlates with decelerations in fetal heart rate, and can cause serious health consequences for the baby if it is not diagnosed or treated. If you believe your baby’s birth injuries were caused by a failure of health care providers to respond to tachysystole, you should call the Syracuse birth injury attorneys of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano to discuss your case. Birth injury cases are complex, and retaining experienced counsel is essential to protecting your rights.Tachysystole
Tachysystole occurs when more than five contractions occur per ten minutes in the course of 30 minutes. It can also occur if contractions happen over two minutes. Often tachysystole occurs when a laboring mother has been provided with Pitocin or Cytotec or a similar synthetic prostaglandin or oxytocin medication to augment labor. The risk of tachysystole is particularly increased when oxytocin and a synthetic prostaglandin are both administered together, since synthetic prostaglandins increase uterine sensitivity to oxytocin.
Uterine contractions temporarily restrict oxygenated blood to the fetus. While babies can withstand reduced oxygenation during labor, when the contractions last too long or happen too frequently, there isn’t enough rest for the baby in between contractions, and the resulting oxygen deprivation is very dangerous. A baby who experiences tachysystole for a prolonged period may suffer birth injuries such as cerebral palsy or hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy.
Tachysystole can also lead to uterine rupture, which is an emergency that can cause birth asphyxia, fetal acidosis, and serious blood loss for the mother.Medical Malpractice and Birth Injuries
To establish liability for tachysystole-related birth injuries, you will need to show that a health care provider owed you and the baby a professional standard of care, but failed to meet that professional standard, thereby causing the baby’s birth injuries. A health care provider may breach the professional standard of care in many ways. Generally, the professional standard of care will be determined by what a competent health care provider in the same specialty in or around Syracuse would have done under the same circumstances.
When signs of tachysystole and fetal distress are present, labor augmenting drugs should not be administered any further or the dosage should be lowered. Treatment of tachysystole may require a health care provider to stop administration of labor augmenting drugs, provide oxygen, increase IV fluids, and reposition you on your left side. Failure to take proper steps in response to tachysystole can be a breach of the professional standard of care. If a prudent obstetrician-gynecologist would have provided oxygen, but none was provided in your case, this may have breached the professional standard of care. Alternatively, if your obstetrician-gynecologist failed to perform an emergency C-section in response to tachysystole and you suffered a uterine rupture as a result, an experienced lawyer can review your situation to determine whether you have a malpractice case.Damages
When a serious birth injury such as cerebral palsy results from a doctor’s actions, the costs associated with caring for and treating the baby may exponentially increase. You can hold the doctor accountable for those costs.
The amount of damages that may be recovered will depend on the extent and type of birth injury. The damages in a birth injury lawsuit can take into account both economic and noneconomic losses sustained by a baby and family as a result of the birth injuries. Economic losses might include medical costs, rehabilitation costs, therapy costs, medical equipment, and out-of-pocket costs. The noneconomic losses arising from a birth injury could include pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment, and mental anguish.Consult a Seasoned Attorney in Syracuse
If you suspect a doctor’s failure to diagnose or treat tachysystole caused you or your baby harm, contact an experienced lawyer at DeFrancisco & Falgiatano for a consultation. We represent patients and their families in Rochester, Syracuse, and other cities in Upstate New York, including in Cooperstown, Auburn, Oneida, Canandaigua, Binghamton, Lyons, Oswego, Watertown, Wampsville, Elmira, Herkimer, Ithaca, Lowville, and Utica. Please contact DeFrancisco & Falgiatano at 315-479-9000 or by completing our online form.