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'Real Housewives' Star Kara Keough's Son Dies In Childbirth: What Is Shoulder Dystocia?

Photo: Instagram
'Real Housewives' Star Kara Keough's Son Dies In Childbirth: What Is Shoulder Dystocia?

Reality TV fans already know that Real Housewives of Orange County star Kara Keough and husband Kyle Bosworth have been expecting their second child any day now, and now, she's shared that she's given birth, but things didn't work out the way her family expected.

Heartbreakingly, Keough's son, McCoy, passed away during childbirth on April 6 due to shoulder dystocia, and now, Keough's opening up about what happened.

But what is shoulder dystocia?

Here's what you need to know about this tragic condition.

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Keough shared what happened to McCoy on Instagram.


A post shared by Kara Bosworth (@karakeoughboz) on Apr 14, 2020 at 9:17am PDT

In a heartfelt Instagram post, Keough shared that her son had been born but suffered complications including shoulder dystocia and a compressed umbilical cord.

"On April 6th, our son McCoy Casey Bosworth was born at 3:10am. Weighing in at 11 pounds and 4 ounces and spanning 21 inches, McCoy surprised us all with his size and strength (and overall perfection)," she wrote. "During the course of his birth, he experienced shoulder dystocia and a compressed umbilical cord." 

She also shared that he was able to donate his organs.

"I wrote this for the organ/tissue procurement team to read out in his honor: 'Tonight, we join together to honor this little savior’s gifts of life. Through him, may others find new hope and profound healing... and may he live again through them. May his legacy shine in the form of lifetimes aplenty - lives filled with laughter, compassion, energy, love, and most of all gratitude. May it be said that McCoy Casey Bosworth left this world in a better place, for a better place.... that he made an impact... that he was an answered prayer... that he was a hero,'" she continued in her Instagram post.

But what is shoulder dystocia? 

Shoulder dystocia is considered a birth injury, which takes place when one or both of the baby's shoulders are stuck inside the mother's pelvis during delivery. Although it's more common for moms who are having a baby who weighs more than eight pounds, 13 ounces, having gestational diabetes, or giving birth to twins or multiple babies at the same time, it can often be hard to predict when it's happening or to prevent it during labor, but doctors will work to move the baby out of the way. In serious cases, this can cause the baby to experience fractures, nerve damage, or like McCoy, death, while mothers are at risk of postpartum hemorrhage, tearing, or uterine rupture.

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The condition doesn't always end In death.

Fortunately, in most cases of shoulder dystocia, babies are able to be born safely with a few adjustments, though it could still cause problems during labor. It's especially dangerous if a baby is unable to get oxygen during birth because of this complication, which seems to have affected McCoy, since his umbilical cord was compressed as well. 

It's also very uncommon.

Shoulder dystocia is obviously really scary but fortunately, it's also very rare. An estimated 0.2 - 3% of pregnancies are affected by this birth injury, which is still a pretty low number. That being said, it's definitely something providers are looking out for during birth.

Keough and her husband first announced their pregnancy in November.

In November, Keough and Bosworth took to Instagram (along with their daughter, Decker) to announce the news with a t-shirt that says "Bebe Tigre" while Decker wore a shirt that said "Sister Tigre." She didn't share much at the time, just that she was due in April 2020, although she did go on to share plenty of bump photos with fans along the way.

It's hard to imagine what Kara and her family are going through, but we'll be thinking of them at this difficult time.

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Nicole Pomarico is an entertainment and lifestyle writer whose work has appeared in Cosmo, Us Weekly, Refinery29, and more.