Atlanta Maternal Death Lawyer
Maternal death refers to the death of a woman during delivery or shortly after delivery. In the United States, about 700 women die annually because of complications related to pregnancy or delivery. According to the March of Dimes, many of these fatalities are preventable. Adequate health care during pregnancy and childbirth can help save lives. A failure to provide health care can lead to severe complications and, in tragic cases, the death of a woman during or shortly after delivery. Although maternal death refers to fatalities during birth or just following a child’s birth, pregnancy-related deaths include those that occur within one year of when the pregnancy came to an end. Sometimes these tragedies are the result of medical malpractice. If a loved one died in a pregnancy-related incident, you might have a claim against the medical providers who failed to adequately care for the mother at a point in time when she was particularly vulnerable. To learn more about your options for pursuing a claim, contact The Moses Firm. Our dedicated lawyers understand how these tragic events can have long-lasting impacts on a family. Call us at 404-721-1050 to learn how we can help you.
Risk Factors Associated with Maternal Death
Maternal deaths often are related to health conditions, including heart disease, which may have occurred before the pregnancy but gotten worse due to the stress placed on the mother’s body. Pregnancy complications like preeclampsia can also prove fatal and can impact a woman at any point after the 20th week of pregnancy through the birth of the child. Treatment provided to pregnant mothers can also come with complications and lead to fatal results. The following conditions are often associated with maternal death:
- Cardiomyopathy: This condition causes the patient’s heart to become larger, more rigid, and thicker than normal. Individuals suffering from cardiomyopathy will experience symptoms, including fatigue, swollen legs, chest pressure, fainting, dizziness, or lightheadedness.
- Heart disease: Heart disease involves narrowing or blocked blood vessels, which can lead to heart attacks and strokes. Individuals suffering from heart disease may experience dizziness, fainting, tiredness, nausea, chest pain for tightness, shortness of breath, fast or slow heartbeats, or swelling of their legs, feet, or ankles.
- Preeclampsia and eclampsia: Preeclampsia and eclampsia are blood pressure conditions which impact pregnant women after the 20th week of their pregnancy or after delivering the baby. In severe cases, preeclampsia will lead to eclampsia, which is a life-threatening condition. Symptoms of preeclampsia include headaches, nausea, changes in vision, pain in the upper right part of the belly or the shoulder, swollen legs, hands, or face, trouble breathing, sudden weight gain of two to five pounds during the course of a week.
- Strokes: Strokes occur when something causes the blood supply to the brain to become reduced or interrupted. Blood clots are one cause of this condition, but strokes can also result from a burst blood vessel in the brain. Pregnancy increases the risk of strokes. Symptoms include numbness and weakness in the patient’s face, legs, or arms, a feeling of confusion, trouble seeing, trouble walking, trouble talking or understanding others, severe headaches, and dizziness.
- Thrombotic pulmonary embolism: Thrombotic pulmonary embolisms take place when an artery in the patient’s lungs becomes blocked. The cause of this is often that a blood clot in the person’s leg becomes dislodged and travels into their lungs. A patient suffering from thrombotic pulmonary embolisms will experience fevers, shortness of breath, leg pain and swelling, dizziness, fast heart rate, and sweating.
- Hemorrhages: Pregnancy-related fatalities can result from severe hemorrhages. These can be the results of issues with the placenta, including placental abruption or placenta previa. Uterine ruptures, which occur when the uterus tears during labor, can lead to bleeding and other complications that impact the mother and the baby.
- Retained tissues and products from the pregnancy: Sometimes, part of the placenta will stay in the mother’s body following the pregnancy. When this happens, it can lead to bleeding, tenderness, pain, and fevers.
- Infections: Pregnancy can cause a woman’s immune system to become less responsive. Infections that might not have impacted a woman before her pregnancy can become serious and potentially life-threatening. Sepsis, which includes fever, fast breathing, and fast heart rate, is a very serious response to infection that can become life-threatening. Infections involving the amniotic fluid and tissue surrounding the baby can also create dangers for the mother and the child. Even the seasonal flu can become a serious threat to a pregnant mother.
Malpractice Related to Maternal Death
Many pregnancy and birth-related conditions are treatable if they are caught in a timely manner and properly addressed. In many cases, a patient will experience symptoms of conditions and yet will not receive the necessary treatment to prevent that condition from progressing and becoming more serious. If you believe your loved one was impacted by a failure to act on the part of the physician, contact an Atlanta, Georgia, medical malpractice attorney.
Call the Atlanta Medical Malpractice Attorneys at The Moses Firm Today
At The Moses Firm, our attorneys understand how devastating maternal death is for a family. If you believe that you and your loved ones were impacted by this tragedy as a result of medical malpractice, contact us today at 404-721-1050 to discuss your legal options.