US District Court, District of Missouri
During the course of delivery, a physician applied vacuum suction to a male child’s head 15 times. The child was born with cerebral palsy and severe mental retardation, with an estimated IQ of 25.
In suing, the plaintiff alleged that the suction caused constriction of internal veins, thus cutting off blood supply to the child’s brain.
The defense, noting a slightly elevated temperature in the mother during labor, maintained that the neonate’s injuries stemmed from a maternal condition.
- The judge awarded the plaintiff $19 million.