Florida Parents File $80 Million Birth Injury Lawsuit For Son’s Brain Damage

Tracy Ray | November 17th, 2012

Florida parents Andrea and William Dorsheimer have filed a lawsuit alleging a birth injury caused by medical negligence that resulted in their son suffering brain damage and other disabilities. Their complaint was filed on August 27, 2012 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida. Since the boy was born at a U.S. Naval Hospital, the lawsuit names the United States of America as a defendant.

Medical team did not react promptly to fetal distress, lawsuit alleges

The lawsuit alleges that the child, known as WDJ in court papers, suffered brain damage because the medical team did not respond promptly to signs of fetal distress and did not perform an emergency C-section in a timely manner.

According to the complaint, Andrea Dorsheimer was admitted to the USA Naval Hospital in Pensacola, Florida when she was about 39 weeks and four days into her pregnancy, which is full term. Her water had broken and she was experiencing contractions every four minutes, so she was expected to have a normal, spontaneous vaginal delivery.

At 2:00 a.m., her doctor began administering Pitocin in order to speed up the labor process. At 4:00 a.m., the fetal heart rate monitor began to show indications of severe fetal distress, and these signs continued for the two hours until the baby was born with no heartbeat at 6:04 a.m.

The attending physician called for an emergency C-section, and also called a “Code White,” indicating that the infant was expected to be born in poor condition and would require medical attention immediately after birth. When the infant was delivered by C-section, he had a single nucal cord around his neck, was not breathing, had no discernible heartbeat, and had poor color.

The medical team was able to resuscitate the infant with chest compressions, but he had suffered brain damage as a result of hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (deprivation of oxygen to the brain). In addition to permanent severe brain damage, the child suffers seizures and requires ongoing speech therapy, physical therapy, and occupational therapy and treatment.

Plaintiffs bring counts of negligence

The plaintiffs bring counts of negligence, alleging that the medical team’s failure to respond to indications of fetal distress and perform an emergency C-section in a timely manner caused their son’s injuries. They are seeking $80 million in damages.

If you believe your child suffered a birth injury in the delivery room caused by negligence or malpractice on the part of the medical team, call Balkin & Eisbrouch for a free consultation to determine if you are eligible to receive financial compensation for your child through litigation. The birth injury lawyers at Balkin & Eisbrouch have more than 40 years of experience in handling malpractice and birth injury cases, and are committed to seeking justice and economic compensation for children with birth injuries. The consultation is free, and if you do pursue litigation, you pay nothing unless we win your case.