Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal.
Related to wrongful birth: Wrongful life
A birth of a child that provides the basis for a cause of action for civil damages because the birth would not have occurred if medical sterilization procedures had been properly performed, if adequate birth control had been provided, or if the parents had been given appropriate prenatal testing or genetic counseling. Also called wrongful life.
Etymology: OE, wrang, twisted; ME, burth
a belief that a birth could have been avoided if the parents had been properly advised by a physician or health care provider that a pregnancy could occur or that a fetus would be deformed.
wrongfulForensic medicine An adjective with considerable medico-legal currency, used in several contexts. See Negligence.
Wrongful death An event that is usually regarded as negligent. See Negligence.
Wrongful birth An event resulting from the failure of a contraceptive or sterilization procedure, eg fallopian tube liagation, failure to diagnose pregnancy, or an unsuccessful attempt to abort a conceptus.
Wrongful life An event in which legal action may be taken by–or on behalf of the baby suffering from a hereditary or congenital defect, eg Down syndrome or other disease, eg rubella, who would not have been born had the parents had the knowledge to opt for an abortion; WL represents either the failure to diagnose in utero a condition that would lead to a major life-long handicap or recognize such a condition in a sibling, allowing a 2º, similarly afflicted, child to be born; the child is the defendant named in a lawsuit initiated to defray the incurred and anticipated medical, nursing and related health expenses; in both WB and WL, the defendant may be liable for support and care of the infant from 'cradle to grave'
wrongful birth, wrongful life
The idea that conception would have been prevented or pregnancy would have been interrupted if the parents had been adequately informed of the possibility that the mother would give birth to a physically or mentally challenged child.