The membranes that surround a fetus in the womb are called the "chorion" and the "amnion."  Chorioamnionitis is a condition where these membranes and the amniotic fluid become infected, usually from bacteria in the vagina or anus that make their way into the uterine cavity.  It occurs in approximately 2% of births in the United States.

Chorioamnionitis is a cause for concern because it is associated with several problems for mother and baby, including bacteremia, labor complications, maternal blood loss and, in rare cases, meningitis or cerebral palsy (term babies are 4x more likely to suffer from CP if exposed in the womb).  Signs of chorioamnionitis include a fever in the mother, foul smelling amniotic fluid and elevated fetal heart rate.  Risk factors for chorioamnionitis include:
  • long labor;
  • prolonged rupture of membrances;
  • repeated vaginal examinations during labor;
  • pre-existing lower genital tract infection; and
  • internal fetal monitoring.
Most cases of chorioamnionitis are treated with a combination of intravenous ampicillin or penicillian, and gentamicin.  In advanced cases, a cesarean section may also be necessary because of a failure of the fetus to progress through the birth canal.  As many as 75% of women with chorioamnionitis require uterine stimulation.  30% to 40% of those women will eventually require an abdominal delivery.

The trial lawyers at Bottar Law, PLLC, have decades of experience investigating, prosecuting and trying to verdict medical malpractice and birth injury cases.  If you or your baby have been injured due to medical malpractice, you, your child and your family may be entitled to compensation for lifelong health care, medical expenses, special education, medical bills, loss of income, and pain and suffering. 

To discuss your case or concerns with an experienced Central New York medical malpractice and birth injury attorney, contact us now at (315) 422-3466, (800) 336-LAWS, or by e-mail at