Infant torticollis, or “Loxia,” is a relatively common congenital disorder that occurs when a baby’s neck is twisted at an abnormal angle, forcing the newborn’s chin to point upwards while its head tilts to the side.
Although this condition affects 40% of all babies born in the United States, it’s rare to find someone outside of the medical field who knows what it is. Consequently, many new parents don’t know what to do when their newborn starts exhibiting the visually alarming symptoms of this condition.
Holding Doctors Accountable for causing Infant Torticollis
Sadly, the most common causes of infant torticollis involve physical trauma and doctor negligence. For example, a doctor may decide to use obstetrical instruments including forceps or a vacuum device to manually assist or facilitate vaginal delivery. Because these instruments put pressure on the sternocleidomastoid muscle in the neck, even a small mistake can cause the baby physical harm.
If your child is suffering from the physical symptoms associated with torticollis, contact the New Jersey birth injury lawyers at The Donnelly Law Firm as soon as possible. Our trial-tested attorneys have over 50 years of collective legal experience and are nationally recognized as leaders in the field of birth injury litigation.
We can investigate your case, review your baby’s medical records, and work with specialists to determine if medical negligence is responsible for your child’s condition. No matter the complexity of your case, you can trust that our legal representatives have the skills, experience, and resources to effectively represent your interests and maximize your claim.
The Causes & Symptoms of Infant Torticollis
Torticollis needs to be diagnosed by your child’s healthcare provider. The doctor can test for infant torticollis by moving the baby’s head, feeling the muscles in their neck, and reviewing CAT scan or X-ray results. A standard treatment program can include stretching exercises with a pediatric physical therapist, medications, and, in more severe cases, surgical intervention.
Many families choose to pursue litigation because the costs associated with treatment are so high. If left untreated, a baby may adapt to its condition by using one side of its body more than the other. This can lead to spinal complications as the baby grows into adulthood.
The causes of infant torticollis include:
- Forceps injuries
- Vacuum extraction injuries
- Forceful or improper pulling by the physician
- Abnormal birth presentation
- Spine misalignment in utero
The symptoms of infant torticollis are fairly standard but tend to vary in severity. For example, some babies may develop a “flat head” (positional plagiocephaly) or a small neck lump. Most symptoms can be cured over time, so long as the child has a dedicated treatment program in place. However, as the child grows older, it can be difficult to correct these symptoms through stretching alone.
The common symptoms of infant torticollis include:
- Constant head tilt
- Awkward chin positioning
- Headaches and head tremors
- Neck pains
- Stiff or swelling neck muscles
Birth Injury Claims & Infant Torticollis
If your child has been harmed by a medical professional, you may have grounds to file a birth injury claim against the negligent doctor and/or the hospital facility that failed to uphold the standard duty of care. If your lawsuit is successful, you may recover economic and noneconomic damages that provide for your baby’s medical expenses, physical and occupational therapy costs, and more. However, before you can file a claim, you need to discuss your case with a qualified legal representative who can protect your interests and verify that you have a valid case.
To secure damages in a torticollis case, your legal team needs to prove the following factors:
- There was an established doctor/patient relationship.
- The doctor was medically negligent during the delivery process.
- This act of negligence results in a torticollis diagnosis.
The attorneys at The Donnelly Law Firm can research your case and develop a litigation strategy that holds the doctor and hospital accountable for your child’s injuries and any associated financial losses. If you’re ready to take legal action, contact our firm today.
Explore Your Legal Rights & Options with a Qualified Lawyer
Call the New Jersey birth injury attorneys at The Donnelly Law Firm if your child has been harmed by a negligent medical professional. Our award-winning legal team has secured hundreds of millions of dollars on behalf of our clients, including numerous million- and multimillion-dollar verdicts.
We firmly believe that litigation is the ideal means of holding a doctor and hospital accountable for a child’s birth injuries. By taking a legal stand today, you can protect other babies from suffering a similar – or worse – fate.