$700,000 Settlement for Failure to Prenatally Diagnose Cystic Fibrosis

The firm settled this failure in prenatal diagnosis of cystic fibrosis claim on behalf of the mother and her infant daughter. Although the mother was a Caucasian woman of European descent, who fell into the category of ethnic groups who were at an increased risk for this genetic disorder, her OB failed to offer her cystic fibrosis carrier screening. By the time of this pregnancy it had become the standard of care for obstetricians to do so.

That same obstetrician also missed another opportunity for prenatal diagnosis. Rather than referring the mother for genetic counseling or to a perinatologist due to her age (38), the obstetrician choose to perform that role himself, and performed an amniocentesis for chromosome testing for things like open neural tube defects and Down Syndrome. The defendant OB also failed to recommend that the amniotic fluid sample from that amniocentesis be tested for the genetic mutation that causes cystic fibrosis.

As a result of the obstetrician’s failures the parents were denied their right to elect to terminate this pregnancy, and now their daughter will require lifetime care for cystic fibrosis.