What is Chorioamnionitis?

Chorioamnionitis is an infection of the membranes surrounding the fetus. These membranes are referred to as “chorion” and “amnion.” The surrounding amniotic fluid also becomes infected. Although rare, the condition is often caused when bacteria from the mother’s anus or vagina enters and infects the birth canal. In the past, chorioamnionitis was often associated with group B strep infections. However, the condition is also caused by E. coli and MRSA, a bacterial infection that is often resistant to many widely-used antibiotics.

Can the Condition Lead to Complications?

Yes. Left untreated, chorioamnionitis can lead to neurological damage in the fetus. As a result, the infant may be born with cerebral palsy, significant cognitive impairments and pulmonary disease. In some cases, the condition may lead to meningitis. Chorioamnionitis may lead to labor complications which may result in maternal blood loss.

What are the Symptoms of Chorioamnionitis?

Mothers with the condition may experience fever and have foul-smelling amniotic fluid. In addition, the fetus may have an elevated heart rate. In some cases, pregnant women may not exhibit any external symptoms. Therefore, it is important for expectant mothers to seek routine care during pregnancy.

What Risk Factors are Associated With the Condition?

Common risk factors associated with the condition include race and age. African-American women and pregnant teenagers are more likely to develop chorioamnionitis. In addition, prolonged rupturered membranes may also increase a mother’s risk of developing the infection.

How is the Condition Treated?

After performing blood tests and tests of the amniotic fluid, doctors can easily treat the condition with antibiotics administered intravenously. Common medications used to treat the condition are gentamicin, penicillin, and ampicillin.

How can Law Offices of Thomas L. Gallivan, PLLC Help?

If your child suffered neurological injuries as a result of chorioamnionitis, our law firm may be able to help. In some cases, doctors may fail to diagnose the condition or may fail to provide proper treatment. Such cases of malpractice may have led to your child’s cerebral palsy, meningitis or other cognitive impairments. Such disabilities will affect your child for a lifetime. Therefore, if your child’s injuries were the result of malpractice, we will thoroughly investigate your claim, including your child medical records during pregnancy, labor and after care. We will consult with pediatric specialists, and if your child’s injuries could have been prevented, we will recover compensation from those responsible.

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