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CASE STUDY 2: Brain Damaged Baby

Curan & Ahlers represented a child who was a twin, and who was born brain damaged. During the pregnancy, at a routine examination, the doctor noticed that twin A and twin B were suddenly very different in size, as compared from the mother’s last examination. In the prenatal care of twins this is an automatic red flag indicating that something might be wrong since twins typically grow equally in utero. The significant disparity in the size of these twins should have caused immediate concern. However, the family doctor simply said that the mother should come back in six weeks.

Occasionally in pregnancies involving twins the fetuses share the same blood, which was the case in this pregnancy. During trial the defense presented this situation as something very complex, and that “twin-twin transfusions,” which are somewhat rare, can lead to unexpected results at birth. However, upon interviewing experts, Curan & Ahlers determined that once a disparity in size is observed there are measures that can, and should be taken immediately, such as ordering certain exams, or even taking the babies out while they are still viable.

When the family’s doctor was shown the records during trial he agreed that there was a disparity in size and that he should have ordered tests, but instead told the mother to come back in six weeks. During that time twin B died in utero and twin A had to develop with the bad blood being transferred from twin B, which resulted in twin A being born severly brain damaged.

Curan & Ahlers won a substantial monetary award that allowed this loving family to obtain the services, medical treatment and housing needed to care for their child throughout her entire life, until she finally passed away in her twenties.


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