Parents devastated after their baby girl was born covered in cuts and scratches.

Cecily and Paul Damtam were hoping for a straightforward birth at the Vanderbilt University Medical Centre in Tennessee, but say things quickly turned into a nightmare when Cecily’s waters didn’t break naturally.

The devastated parents said their baby’s head was gouged numerous times with an amniotic hook in an attempt to break the water.


“It was a nightmare. That birth was traumatizing,” she told WKRN-TV.

“She went in and she was like, ‘this is a tough water bag, ohh my god, this is so tough’,” Ms Damtam recalled to WKRN-TV.

“She was just jamming it in there.”

Ms Damtam said her daughter was whisked away moments after being born, with doctors telling them she had hypothermia.

When doctors finally returned with little Lorelie, her devastated mother said her “heart just dropped” when she caught a glimpse of her wounded head.

The couple are still demanding an apology from the medical centre for the damage they caused.

Melissa Davis, director of Vanderbilt Nurse Midewifery Practice, insisted that it’s not considered poor care, saying “it can happen”.

“It’s not considered malpractice, it’s not considered poor care; it is just something that can occur during rupturing of membranes,” she told WKRN-TV.

I recall one of my boys looked very similar after birth. Scratched and bruised. No-one really seemed to know how it happened though. Apart from having my waters broken there was no other intervention used.

Did your newborn have any marks on them after birth?

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  • One of my babies was born with a huge haematoma due to forceps delivery. They wouldn’t tell me for the first two years of his life whether he was damaged by it or not as they didn’t know.


  • There needs to be more compassion and answers for parents at such an emotional time.


  • From what my Mum told me I was a forceps birth and had marks on both sides of my head. In my teens I developed a neurological condition. My new Neurologist asked if I was a forceps birth. Lucky Mum told me about it.


  • Oh my goodness – I understand their distress and I would be horrified and wanting some answers too.


  • I can imagine this is upsetting when you’ve just given birth, which is already a huge emotional thing.


  • This does seem like less than ideal care.


  • Oh my! Is that not dangerous? So many scratches.
    My daughter was born with forceps. She just had some redness in her cheeks for a couple a days.


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