When deciding whether or not you want to use Pitocin during delivery to help induce labor, you may never consider that the misuse or overuse of Pitocin can be dangerous to you and your baby. Sometimes you may not even get a choice, as the doctor may feel Pitocin is necessary to avoid fetal distress.
It seems the use of Pitocin is standard in many labor and delivery units nowadays. Although this drug has helped many women speed things along once labor has begun, it has also caused serious injuries to the mother, baby, or both.
What Exactly Is Pitocin?
Pitocin is a synthetic version of the naturally occurring hormone oxytocin, which helps cause contractions during labor. Unlike oxytocin, which is naturally released into the body in short bursts, Pitocin is put into a woman’s body by an intravenous pump (IV). This causes a woman to experience a faster, harder, and more painful labor. Although Pitocin causes sharper contractions, it sometimes is useful—when used correctly—to speed labor along when the baby is in danger.
What Are the Dangers of Pitocin?
Pitocin should be carefully monitored by experienced labor and delivery doctors, and it should be used with a fetal monitor. When a fetal monitor is not used and a doctor doesn’t carefully monitor a patient on Pitocin, or if a physician fails to properly manage the administration of the drug, Pitocin can cause serious injuries or death. Some of the dangers and birth injuries that results from the misuse or overuse of Pitocin include:
- Fetal distress
- Oxygen deficiency
- Rupture of the uterus
- Separation of the placenta
- Brain injury
- Cerebral palsy
If your baby suffered a birth injury in Kentucky, and if you suspect you were given too much Pitocin or the doctor failed to monitor you properly during labor and delivery, you may have the right to seek compensation. Our Northern Kentucky birth injury lawyers can help determine if you have a legal case and seek the maximum compensation that you require to get your child the medical treatment he or she may need.
At the Law Office of Schachter, Hendy & Johnson, our Fort Wright birth injury lawyers will provide you with a free, private consultation so you can get your questions answered and learn more about your rights. Please call us today at (859) 578-4444 or (888) 606-5297.