It is estimated that each year approximately 303,000 newborns die within 30 days of birth as a result of congenital abnormalities and anomalies. Fetal anomalies, which are not life-threatening and would not result in significant functional impairment are typically treated postnatally. However, conditions that would result in significant morbidity and mortality if left untreated prenatally are most often corrected with fetal surgery.
Advances in ultrasound technology allowed obstetricians and perinatologists to not only detect, but also follow the natural progression of untreated anomalies. The importance of careful and regular ultrasound screenings can not be understated. Late and even misdiagnosed fetal abnormalities are not uncommon. The window for treatment can be narrow and some conditions can progress rapidly even after a sudden onset. Time is often of the essence in detecting and treating fetal anomalies.
The first approach at treatment was open fetal surgery. Due to its invasive nature and the associated risks and complications, open fetal surgery never really gained widespread acceptance. Instead operative fetoscopy has emerged as the least invasive and most effective fetal surgery. Rather that cutting open the abdomen and uterus, small narrow instruments and needles are inserted to gain in-utero access for treating the abnormalities. Laser fibers are also commonly inserted through the instruments and have been very effectively used to treat and cure many conditions.
Due to its recent emergence in the past few decades there are few surgeons with adequate training and experience to safely perform fetoscopic laser surgery. Nevertheless, many hospitals have opened fetal care centers and are offering fetoscopic laser surgery. Although the circumstances can be stressful and rushed, parents need to select their surgeon carefully and in the event of fetal demise or neurological impairment the surgery video should be examined by an experienced fetal surgery lawyer. Considering the high risk nature of the pregnancies most often associated with fetal surgery, many parents mistakenly attribute the fetal demise or neurologic impairment to the underlying condition rather than surgical errors or worse yet surgical incompetence.
With proper training and experience fetoscopic laser surgery is a life changing and life saving procedure. However, when performed without due care, surgeons can cause severe neurological impairment such as cerebral palsy and even fetal death. Some of the institutions offering fetoscopy or fetal surgery are located in Denver, Colorado; Dallas, Texas; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Tampa, Florida; Baltimore, Maryland; New York, New York; Cincinnati, Ohio; Bellevue, Washington.
Some of the conditions and fetal abnormalities treated with operative fetoscopy and fetoscopic laser surgery include:
- Alloimmune Thrombocytopenia
- Amniotic Bands
- CCAM BPS
- Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia (CDH)
- Fetal Anemia
- Fetal Tumors
- Iatrogenic Ruptured Membranes
- Fetal Bladder Outlet Obstruction (LUTO)
- Pleural and Pericardial Effusions
- Twin-Twin Transfusion Syndrome (TTTS)
Aside from the grief of losing an unborn child, parents can face unimaginable financial obstacles to care for and treat babies born with serious neurological impairments. No parent wants to think that their child’s disabilities were caused by surgical error or incompetence. However, in light of the staggering costs associated with for example caring for cerebral palsy babies, the cause and origin of the neurological injury should be examined by an experienced fetal surgery lawyer.
The fetal surgery lawyers at the Killino Firm care about the well-being of disabled and neurologically impaired children. They will carefully review the fetal surgery, pregnancy and delivery in conjunction with the world’s leading fetal surgery medical experts. Where the cause of the injury or disability is not related to negligent fetal surgery, parents will be candidly notified. Likewise, in the unfortunate event that the child’s injuries were caused by a negligent or incompetent fetal surgeon, parents will be advised of the best options to advocate for and protect their child’s rights and interests.
To get answers on what caused your child’s injury or death contact the Killino Firm at (877) 855-2927, or fill out our form on this page or click here to contact a fetal surgery lawyer today. We’ll make sure that every guilty party is held completely responsible for the harm they caused.
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