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H. D., a minor v Anonymous Physician/Medical Center

Dr. Fagel obtained a settlement of $1,750,000 on behalf of a child who now suffers brain damage after his mother’s uterus ruptured during labor. The mother was admitted to the hospital for elective labor induction after she was past her expected date of delivery, but was then allowed to rest overnight after she had made no progress in labor after 10 hours. The next day, the mother began to experience strong contractions with severe abdominal pain. An anesthesiologist removed the fetal monitor and placed an epidural for her pain. The nurse then re-attached the fetal monitor but could not find any fetal heart tones. After ten minutes of failing to find a fetal heart tone, the nurse called an obstetrician, who ordered a crash Cesarean section. At delivery, the baby was found outside the uterus in the abdominal cavity with alarmingly low Apgar scores. As a result of injuries sustained in the birth process, the plaintiff now suffers hypoxic brain injuries and cerebral palsy. Our attorneys demonstrated that the anesthesiologist was negligent for removing the fetal monitor for an epidural and that the nurse unnecessarily delayed in contacting the obstetrician after losing fetal heart tones; had the pregnancy been properly monitored and managed, a timely C-section would have been performed and the plaintiff’s injuries could have been prevented.