A diaphragmatic hernia is a birth defect in which there is an abnormal opening in the diaphragm, which is the muscle that helps you breathe. This opening, or malformation, allows part of the abdominal organs (spleen, stomach, liver and intestines) to move into the chest cavity near the lungs. A diaphragmatic hernia occurs as a result of the improper joining of structures during fetal development, which also prevents the lung tissue on the affected side from developing properly. In fact, the major causes of death among children with diaphragmatic hernia are pulmonary hypoplasia and pulmonary hypertension. If your child was born with a diaphragmatic hernia, and you believe a medical mistake to be the cause, contact an experienced birth defect attorney immediately. Your child may be entitled to lifetime care, which you can collect by filing a birth defect lawsuit against the allegedly negligent doctor, hospital or Ob/Gyn.
In cases of diaphragmatic hernia, significant breathing difficulty almost always develops shortly after the baby is born, because of ineffective movement of the diaphragm and crowding of the lung tissue, which causes collapse. Other symptoms of diaphragmatic hernia birth defects include:
A diaphragmatic hernia is a medical emergency requiring surgery to place the abdominal organs into the proper position and repair the opening in the diaphragm. Infants who undergo surgery for diaphragmatic hernia will need breathing support until they recover from the procedure. Some infants are placed on a heart/lung bypass machine, which gives the lungs a chance to recover and expand after surgery. The outcome of surgery in children with diaphragmatic hernia depends on a number of factors, including how well the lungs have developed and whether there are any other congenital problems. In most cases, the prognosis is good for children who have enough lung tissue and have no other difficulties, although diaphragmatic hernia complications may include lung infections and other serious congenital malformations.
Newborns with diaphragmatic hernia often have severe respiratory distress, which can be life-threatening unless treated appropriately. If you or a loved one has suffered from a diaphragmatic hernia, which you believe to be the result of a medical mistake, contact a qualified birth defect attorney to discuss your legal options. You may have grounds to file a medical malpractice lawsuit against the allegedly negligent Ob/Gyn, doctor or hospital, in order to seek financial compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, and pain and suffering. No child deserves to suffer from a birth defect like diaphragmatic hernia immediately after being born. With the help of an experienced birth defect lawyer, victims of diaphragmatic hernia birth defects and their loved ones can protect their rights and collect the compensation they deserve.