Philadelphia Caput Succedaneum Lawyers

A caput succedaneum is a common and usually minor birth injury that results from contact between the infant’s scalp and the mother’s cervix. The condition is associated with difficult or breeched deliveries, but it can occur even in completely normal birthing situations. Some studies suggest that the vacuum extraction method of delivery can boost the likelihood that a caput succedaneum will form. The injury is related to another kind of newborn scalp bleeding called cephalohematoma. The main difference is, when a baby suffers caput succedaneum, the swelled area of the scalp may go across the midline of the skull.

In addition to swelling, symptoms might include irritability, some minor bleeding, and bruising or so-called “molding” of the head. The injury is most likely to take place on the portion of the scalp that breeches first.

Unlike other, potentially more distressing birth injuries, such as Erb’s Palsy or shoulder dystocia, caput succedaneum usually does not require advanced treatment and will resolve on its own typically within a few days after birth. If the head has been molded, it will in almost all cases return to normal size within that time.

Although caput succedaneum typically occurs during the birthing process itself, the injury can occur earlier during pregnancy, particularly if a membrane ruptures early or if there is a dearth of amniotic fluid. An ultrasound performed around 30 weeks to 35 weeks can usually pick up signs of a pre-delivery caput succedaneum injury.

Other than help for the pain and irritation, no treatment (save observation) is usually necessary. That said, the bruising can put the infant at a slightly higher risk of jaundice.

Birthing injuries can be traumatic to manage — both for an infant and for new parents. If a medical professional or institution might be responsible for a birth injury to your child, it’s important to get sound legal advice as soon as possible. Consult with the Philadelphia birth injury medical malpractice legal team of Cherry Injury Law today for free to determine whether or not you might have a liability case. Explore our biographies and qualifications online, or dial 215-675-2400 or e-mail an associate to set up your free initial conversation now.