If your child has been injured by negligence on the part of your delivery team or the medical facility itself, the results can be devastating. Facial nerve damage – or facial nerve palsy – refers to loss of voluntary muscle movement in the face that can lead to permanent paralysis, which makes it an especially challenging birth injury. If you’re concerned that your newborn may have been injured by medical malpractice, you’re not alone – an experienced Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, birth injury attorney can help.

Understanding Medical Malpractice Claims

While anyone can make a mistake, medical malpractice means that the medical professional or facility in question deviated from the practices that other reasonable medical practitioners and facilities employ in similar situations. This can involve taking an action that others wouldn’t or failing to take an action that others would. If your newborn is injured in the process and you face losses that are addressed by the law as a result, it could be medical malpractice.

Facial Nerve Damage Sustained at Birth

MedlinePlus reports that facial nerve damage can be caused by birth trauma, and it refers to a child’s loss of control over muscle movement in their face due to pressure exerted on the facial nerve just prior to or during the birth process. Some of the most common causes include the following:

  • A large baby, which can be the result of gestational diabetes that isn’t adequately addressed by the attending physician
  • A long pregnancy
  • A long labor
  • The use of medicine to hasten labor
  • The use of epidural anesthesia

Every birth comes with its own risk factors, and doctors are charged with applying the protocols employed in the industry to help ensure that both mothers and babies are well protected. When they fail to remain within these parameters, it can translate to medical malpractice.

Symptoms of Facial Nerve Damage at Birth

Some of the symptoms that are most common in cases of facial nerve damage include the following:

  • Muscle weakness around the lips may make the child’s mouth look lopsided when they cry
  • Uneven lower facial movements
  • An eyelid on the affected side that won’t close all the way
  • No movement from the forehead to the chin on the affected side of the face – in very serious cases

Surgery that’s intended to remove pressure on the nerve may be required, and ongoing therapy may also be needed.

Speak to an Experienced Harrisburg Birth Injury Attorney Today

An injury that affects your precious child’s facial movements can be especially painful, and the compassionate birth injury attorneys at Marzella and Associates – proudly serving Harrisburg, Pennsylvania – appreciate what you’re going through and have the experience, legal insight, and skill to help. Our accomplished legal team is well prepared to fiercely advocate for your claim’s optimal outcome, and we encourage you to reach out and contact us online or call 717-234-7828 to schedule your free consultation and learn more about what we can do to help you today.