Shoulder Dystocia


An injury due to shoulder dystocia occurs during birth. Concerns that may lead to an injury of this nature include:

  • Before birth: a mother with gestational diabetes or a large child.
  • During birth: a stalled delivery after the head emerges during birth.

If a baby is afflicted with shoulder dystocia during the birth process, the results can be serious. Shoulder dystocia can cause temporary shaking or paralysis, a broken arm or collar bone, as well as nerve damage in or around the brachial plexus. Brain damage can also result from shoulder dystocia.

Causes of shoulder dystocia include an instance where the baby’s shoulder is trapped against the mother’s pubic bone during delivery. Because of this abnormal positioning, the trapped shoulder prevents the baby from exiting through the vagina. This injury can harm the shoulder and nerves of the baby who is trapped, as well as occasionally causing asphyxiation and brain damage.

When shoulder dystocia occurs, doctors can rely on several methods designed to prevent injury to the infant. Delivery room negligence results when a doctor fails to properly identify a shoulder dystocia and to act to prevent it from causing harm.

When a baby is harmed by shoulder dystocia due to a negligent delivery process, the injuries can be extremely serious, and often permanent. For more than 35 years, we have been advocates for victims of medical negligence, including those who have suffered birth injuries due to malpractice.

We offer an initial free consultation. Call our office at 717-509-6141, or email Ms. Strang-Kutay at to arrange for an office consultation or telephone consult.