Friday, December 11, 2009

Another two babies die because cesareans are not carried out

I read these two stories online today, in which precious babies' lives could have been saved with a cesarean delivery.

The first, by Colin Fernandez writing for the Daily Mail, is titled: ''Chaotic' care led to baby's death', and reports on an inquest into the death of Ebony McCall at Milton Keynes General Hospital's maternity unit.

Cesarean request denied and maternity unit understaffed
According to the report, doctors 'missed two chances to save Ebony's life', and indeed the mother and her family's own request for 'emergency surgical delivery' was 'ruled against'.

Furthermore, staff were 'overstretched as 12 mothers gave birth at the unit that night [and] only four midwives were on duty...'. Eventually, an emergency cesarean was carried out on the baby's mother, who is described as 'rolling in pain' and suffering from other health problems 'including a faulty heart valve, only one working kidney and curvature of the spine.'

The second, 'Jury finds doctors liable in death of newborn', appears in The Buffalo News, and Matt Gryta reports on a $2.2 million award for the family of baby Leah Kreinheder, 'who died of a seizure linked to her mishandled birth'.

Continue with labor and don't do a cesarean!
Despite concerns about 'problems with the baby’s heart rate', the decision was made 'to continue with the labor and not perform a caesarean section'

What happened next is a sadly familiar story - 'the baby became stuck during the delivery and for almost five minutes was deprived of oxygen; as a result, she suffered brain damage and head trauma, multiple bruises on her head and arms and was blue at birth... [She] suffered seizures and was transferred to Women & Children’s Hospital in Buffalo, where she remained for a month.'

I ask once again: How many more babies have to die before hospitals understand that efforts to reduce cesarean rates or avoid 'unnecessary cesareans' can have dangerous and devastating effects?

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