Don't want my baby exposed to chlamydia, but MD won't do c-section?

by Tiffany

I've had problems with getting rid of Chlamydia. I've had this infection twice and got over it with antibiotics (my partner didn't get treatment finished and transmitted it back) and the 3rd time, I was with a new partner 1 year later and found out at 8 weeks pregnant that I had Chlamydia once again. This was treated the same month (June) and I was tested in July to make sure the infection was gone. The results were negative and my partner and I were having sex again already when they tested me then.

My partner went to jail for 2 months and neither one of us had engaged in sexual intercourse with anyone else during this time, so when I went back in September my doctor said they wanted to do a screening and they found it again. They said it was a recurrent infection. I'm 39 weeks pregnant and I was treated today. They said I was 2cm dilated that same day.

I asked if I could have a c-section if it wasn't cured by the time I went into labor and my baby passed through the birth canal. He said absolutely not unless it was an emergency and he would not do it. He told me she could just be treated for the infection at birth, but I believe that if she doesn't have to be exposed to this, then by all means, I don't want her to be. I could avoid that possibility if the procedure was done.

I, as the mother, do not want her exposed to the antibiotics so early when it is so avoidable. If my baby is exposed to this STD - when it is acknowledged that I have it - can my doctor be held responsible if treatment is necessary? Is there any way I can be sure to have the c-section done? Thank you.

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Don't want my baby exposed to chlamydia, but MD won't do c-section?":

Tiffany (Michigan):

In most cases when a pregnant mother has a confirmed STD diagnosis, the doctor will recommend a Cesarean Section be performed. It is considered much safer delivery for the baby. In your case it's quite obvious your doctor isn’t going to perform a C-Section unless there is an emergency.

Simply put, you really should seek a new gynecologist/obstetrician to deliver the baby. While that may be difficult under the circumstances, from the facts you present your baby’s health may require doing so.

Speak with your doctor again. If in fact you are presently suffering from Chlamydia and there is even a remote chance your baby may be infected, you may be able to change the doctor’s mind. His statement about treating the baby after its birth if the baby is infected with Chlamydia sounds medically illogical.

If a doctor denies a C-Section to a mother who is known to suffer from an STD, and the child is born infected with the STD, such a doctor might have committed medical malpractice.

Unfortunately, because you already know you suffer from Chlamydia, and you also know there is a chance your baby will be born with the infection, you are under an obligation to seek another doctor. This is called “mitigating your damages.” Even though seeking a new doctor may be a substantial burden, if you don’t do so, any claim of medical malpractice may fail.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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