Doctors search for birth defects in children because they can often address them right at birth. Many issues are far easier to correct immediately, either through surgery or through other means.
The other side of this coin is that it's potentially very dangerous if doctors miss clear defects and make mistakes. If they wait too long, the issues may become harder or even impossible to correct. Some birth defects can be fatal.
With the drastic impact of a failure to make a diagnosis, you probably want to know exactly when they should find the defects. This is complicated because the nature of the defect itself helps to determine when they find it.
For instance, some heart defects are found during newborn screening, which includes a pulse oximetry test. This checks the blood oxygen levels and the pulse rate.
However, other defects can be found months before birth, during ultrasound scans. In these cases, doctors often make plans to perform surgery as soon as the baby is born. They may even have to induce labor early or do a cesarean section to make sure the plans go smoothly.
Other defects that doctors can see on an ultrasound include spina bifida and evidence that a baby may have Down Syndrome.
Did doctors make some critical errors with your child? These mistakes may have happened long before your child was actually born, but they can have a major impact on the rest of your life and your child's life. Be sure that you understand all of the legal rights you have to seek out financial compensation.