Caesarian sections (C-sections) are often necessary during childbirth due to things like fetal distress, a very large baby, maternal distress and other problems. When doctors and nurses ignore the signs of a problem and allow normal labor to continue, tragedy can result.

Since you’re not a doctor, how do you know if a C-section should have been done (or done sooner) when you were in labor? Here are some signs that a C-section might have been warranted:

  • You had placenta previa, meaning that the placenta partially or completely covered the opening of your cervix.
  • Your baby was in a breech position or had their shoulders presenting first.
  • Your labor wasn’t progressing or your baby showed signs of fetal distress on a monitor.
  • You were pregnant with more than one child, especially if it was triplets or more.
  • You have severe fibroids in your birth canal or a prolapsed umbilical cord.
  • You have any other major health concerns that could make labor and delivery risky.
  • There were indications that your baby was especially big prior to birth, especially when compared to the width of your pelvis.
  • You previously had a difficult labor and delivery that ended in a C-section.

Keep in mind that doctors often try to avoid C-sections because they are surgical procedures that come with their own risks. Just the same, your doctor should have at least assessed you for potential complications with your pregnancy and discussed whether or not a C-section was warranted.

It’s very difficult for a layperson to know when medical malpractice has occurred. If you have suspicions, however, it’s wise to speak with an experienced medical malpractice attorney who can help you determine the viability of your claim.