$10 million verdict for woman injured while giving birth

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A jury awarded $10 million to a Chicago mother who suffered a tear during the birth of her baby that was not diagnosed in a timely manner.

The woman filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against her obstetrics and gynecological physician at Rush University Medical Center after she suffered a tear during childbirth on July 2, 2010, according to a statement from Corboy & Demetrio, the law firm that represented her in the suit.

The woman had a c-section in a previous birth because of dilation issues, but was advised by her doctor to try a vaginal birth. Her lawyers argued the tear occurred during the use of medical forceps during the delivery. The child was not injured.

At trial, lawyers for the woman’s physician argued that the tear occurred a day after the baby’s birth, not during childbirth, according to the statement.

“I think what started out as a well-intentioned effort to get her to a vaginal delivery, over many hours, created multiple risk factors for a fourth-degree tear, and then when she suffered one, it was missed,” attorney David R. Barry said in the statement. “These tears have to be repaired immediately or serious consequences can occur — like it did here.”

The Cook County jury delivered its verdict Tuesday afternoon after deliberating for two hours after a six-day trial before Judge Thomas J. Lipscomb. In addition to the $10 million verdict for the woman, who is also a physician, the jury awarded her husband $1 million for loss of consortium.

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