Boy settles High Court shoulder injury case for €600,000

A boy who allegedly suffered a shoulder injury at birth has settled a High Court action for €600,000.

Matthew Meehan, now aged 12, has balance and coordination issues and therefore misses out a lot in relation to sports but is doing very well at school, Liam Reidy SC told the court on Tuesday.

Counsel said their case alleged “excessive force” was used during a forceps delivery of the boy at the Coombe hospital in Dublin in October 2008. The forceps almost went into the baby’s eye, he said.

Matthew, of Russell Square, Tallaght, Dublin had, through his mother, Julie Meehan, sued the Coombe Women’s & Infants University Hospital, Cork Street, Dublin over the circumstances of his birth on October 8th, 2008.

It was claimed Ms Meehan was admitted to the Dublin hospital on October 8th, 2008 to have her second child.

During the instrumental delivery of the baby, it was claimed he was caused to suffer a fracture of his left collarbone and an injury to his left shoulder area, known as an Erb’s Palsy injury.

The boy was delivered at 11.20pm and weighed 4.32kg. There were forceps marks on his face and scalp but the baby recovered well, it was claimedd.

The following day, he was holding his left arm in a certain way and three days later a physical examination demonstrated a fracture in the left clavicle which was confirmed by X ray, it was claimed.

There was no significant improvement in the baby’s elbow or shoulder movement and he later had to have a nerve graft procedure.

It was further claimed excessive traction was applied to the baby’s neck or shoulder during the forceps delivery, there was failure to avail of another manoeuvre when it was known the delivery was complicated by shoulder dystocia, and failure to record or heed the mother’s obstetric history.

The claims were denied.

Mr Justice Kevin Cross approved the settlement.

Source: Irish Times

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