Perinatology Expert Witness Discusses Fatal Caesarean Section Error

Joseph O'Neill

Written by
— Updated on June 26, 2017

Perinatology Expert WitnessThis case involves a patient in Mississippi who went into labor and had a cesarean section. This was patient’s 4th pregnancy, and she had undergone another successful cesarean section previously. During the cesarean section, scar tissue was encountered and caused significant bleeding. The baby’s head was low in the pelvis, and was delivered after several trials, after the uterine incision was extended. After delivery, the baby was under respiratory distress due to a decrease in blood volume with poor oxygen carrying capacity.  The infant had lost significant blood during delivery due to adhesion, and died shortly after delivery.

Question(s) For Expert Witness

  • 1. Do you routinely perform cesarean sections?
  • 2. Have you performed c-sections on patients who have undergone multiple cesareans in the past?
  • 3. Can you opine on the standard of care during a c-section when the placenta is encountered?

Expert Witness Response E-032491

I routinely perform cesarean deliveries on women with multiple prior cesarean deliveries. I can opine on the standard of care during a cesarean where placenta is encountered. I am a board certified MFM who supervises labor and delivery at a major university hospital. My research area of expertise is care quality. I’m unclear why the head of the baby was so low – this is an unusual occurrence and could likely have contributed to the unfavorable outcome here.

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