Birth Injury Lawsuit Filed Over Brachial Plexus Injury

The mother of a child that suffered a brachial plexus injury during delivery has filed a lawsuit in Cook County Circuit Court claiming that the attending physician was negligent during the pregnancy and delivery in 2004. The lawsuit states that the doctor’s negligence caused the child’s brachial plexus injury and other health problems.

Erin Burke, the plaintiff, is seeking damages for the injuries suffered by her son, Dylan Burke.

The brachial plexus is a collection of nerves that form a connection between the spinal cord and the shoulder and arm, and injuries to the nerves are most commonly the result of shoulder dystocia during a difficult delivery. In an effort to aid the delivery, a physician may exert pressure that damages the nerves, resulting in a birth injury. Injuries to the brachial plexus can also be caused by improper use of forceps or vacuums during delivery.

A brachial plexus injury can also result when a vaginal delivery is attempted even though a C-section could be safer, for instance if the baby is particularly large or is in breech.

The lawsuit alleges that the physician failed to provide proper antenatal care, failed to perform an adequate delivery and performed excessive manipulations that caused the injury.

As a result, the lawsuit states, the child suffered nerve damage, a skull fracture, intracranial hemorrhage and a neurological impairment. Burke alleges that her son now suffers from permanent injuries that will require medical care on an ongoing basis. The lawsuit seeks damages for medical expenses past and future, lost earning potential and loss of enjoyment of life.

Paul Greenberg is a Chicago medical malpractice lawyer and Chicago medical malpractice attorney with Briskman Briskman & Greenberg. To learn more call 1.877.595.4878 or visit

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