The parents of a baby who died just a day after birth have filed a wrongful death lawsuit, alleging that the death was caused by a botched delivery and a failure to order a needed Caesarean section.
The complaint was filed by Ashley and Leland Jones in Polk County Circuit Court on April 26, on behalf of their daughter, Rowyn, who was born on October 16, 2016, and died the next day. The lawsuit names Dr. Ashley M. Lane, nurse Chelsey Roberts, and Bolivar OB/GYN LLC and its parent company, Signature Medical Group, Inc. as defendants, according to a report published by the Bolivar Herald-Free Press.
Jones went into the early stages of labor on October 15, 2016. However, the lawsuit indicates that Lane and Roberts failed to recognize that she was not progressing as she should.
The lawsuit alleges that Lane ordered that Jones be given Pitocin, to cause contractions, when she should have ordered a Caesarean section to facilitate the delivery of the baby in a safe and timely manner.
Pitocin (oxytocin) is a hormone used to cause labor contractions or make them stronger. It can help control bleeding following childbirth, and is sometimes used to induce abortion in cases of miscarriage.
However, once Jones was given Pitocin, instead, Rowyn’s heart rate dropped repeatedly during labor. After Rowyn was born she was placed in neonatal intensive care, and died the following day.
The use of Pitocin has been linked to a number of birth injury claims in recent years.
In January 2017, a Pennsylvania jury awarded $14.5 million to an Ohio couple who said that inappropriate use of Pitocin resulted in their son being born with cerebral palsy. In 2011, a Michigan jury awarded $144 million to a woman whose daughter was born with brain damage, allegedly due to the side effects of both Pitocin and Halperin. In that case, the lawsuit similarly claimed that doctors failed to order a Caesarian section procedure.