Infant torticollis, also known as “wry neck” or “Loxia” happens when during birth the baby’s neck twists. Then, the head tips to one side while the chin points upwards. Treatment must begin quickly, therefore parents should be aware of the symptoms.
About Infant Torticollis
Infant torticollis can develop quickly in boys or girls. The common causes are the misuse of vacuum extraction and improper forceful pulling by the physician during delivery. Without immediate intervention, infant torticollis can cause lifelong complications. Most signs and symptoms of infant torticollis are generally the same but will vary in severity. The most common signs and symptoms of this birth injury include:
- Constantly leaning the head in only one direction
- Head tremors
- Neck pain
- One shoulder may be higher on the body than the other shoulder
- Neck muscle stiffness
- Neck muscle swelling
- Awkward chin position
Birth Trauma Causing Infant Torticollis
When a doctor improperly delivers a baby, he or she can cause infant torticollis. If not immediately tended to, lifelong complications happen. A pediatrician must immediately perform a series of tests and exams such as a CT scan of the neck, MRI of the brain, and an EMG to determine if and which muscles in the neck are affected.
Even with treatment, the infant could still have long-term tingling and numbness. Furthermore, constant pressure in the affected area causes chronic muscle swelling, which can develop into scoliosis or plagiocephaly. Unfortunately, there isn’t a way to prevent infant torticollis. Physicians must take the utmost caution and care when delivering infants. However, medical negligence causes this birth injury. Then, not wanting to be liable prevents doctors from giving infants the quick treatment needed. It is a vicious cycle that hurts the child.
If a doctor doesn’t order the immediate treatment for the injury, then long-term complications are common. The child must undergo painful treatments. This includes stretching the shortened neck muscle on the affected side. Stretching starts at three months old. If this doesn’t work, the child must have a spinal surgery. This occurs around age 4. Then, the child must have heat, traction and massage therapy to the spine, neck braces, constant medication and injections every three months. This gets expensive and painful.
Costs Associated with Birth Injuries
Birth injuries are often lifelong complications that require consistent medical treatment and rehabilitation. Depending upon the severity of the injuries, the financial costs associated with birth injuries can range from several thousand to over a million during the lifespan of a child with birth injuries.
For instance, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the lifetime costs associated with a child who has cerebral palsy (CP) is around $1 million. The costs associated with a child who suffers hearing loss after a birth injury typically ranges around $400,00.
Therefore, it is important to remember that if your child’s birth injuries are a result of medical negligence and carelessness, the medical staff, hospital, and/or physician may be liable for damages. A complex litigation attorney can help. At The Michael Brady Lynch Firm, our lawyers have decades of experience helping injured people get justice and full compensation for injuries caused negligence. The Michel Brady Lynch Firm regularly takes on the largest corporations in the world with a track records of proven success and results. Contact The Michael Brady Lynch Firm today, and our attorneys will review your case for free and help you protect your rights. Therefore, for your complimentary consultation, call our office now.