Injuries resulting from Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE)

Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE) is a serious condition that often causes brain injuries in newborns. HIE occurs when the baby’s brain is deprived of oxygen or receives a limited amount of blood by the time he or she is born.
Also referred to as birth asphyxia, this condition affects 23 percent of infants worldwide, according to a 2018 study in Medscape.

What Causes Injuries Resulting from Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy?

HIE occurs in babies when their brain gets damaged during the perinatal period or during birth. Typically, it affects full-term babies, just before or during labor.
The primary cause of HIE is oxygen deprivation to the brain, which leads to subsequent damage. This is due to a decrease or cessation of blood flow to the baby’s brain. Such damage ranges in severity but the effects tend to be permanent and may result in many further complications in the future.

How Are Injuries Resulting from Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy Treated?

According to a 2007 study published in Current Treatment Options Neurology, resorting to therapeutic hypothermia in the first six hours after birth can save babies’ lives and prevent severe disabilities. Furthermore, supportive care helps maintain newborns’ health, preventing seizures, poor perfusion, electrolyte imbalance, and abnormal glycemic control.
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What Are the Long-term Effects of Injuries Resulting from Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy?

A 2011 study by doctors published in PubMed Central, points out that 40 to 60 percent of affected infants die by the age of two or end up with a lifelong disability. These lingering disabilities often result in a shortened lifespan, developmental delays, epilepsy, cognitive problems, motor skill development delays, and neurodevelopment delays.
Typically, these delays surface when the child is put in a situation that requires him or her to master complex abilities at school but fails to do so.

Are Injuries Resulting from Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy Caused by Medical Malpractice?

There many mistakes doctors can make that could cause HIE. For example, mistaking a dose of anesthesia.
Also, providing mothers with large doses of painkillers can affect their babies. If a mother or her baby shows signs of a heart problem, it is the responsibility of the doctor to act hastily and manage the problem. Additionally, any issues with the mother’s respiration must be taken care of immediately.
If a child is inadequately manipulated while in the womb, he or she is at risk of HIE. Mishandling medical equipment, such as catheters, forceps, and vacuum extractors may also result in HIE. Misusing medications that aren’t safe for the baby or not recognizing excessive contractions can also harm the baby and lead to HIE.
It is the full responsibility of the doctor to appropriately monitor the mother and baby’s blood pressure, oxygen saturation, and other vital indicators.

The Morgan & Morgan Team Is Here to Help

If your delivery was complicated and affected your baby who now has HIE, call our team of birth injury medical professionals and lawyers at Morgan & Morgan.
We can help you pursue the compensation you deserve. We’ve worked with many families in positions like yours and helped recover millions that were used to assist parents with the financial burden caused by medical malpractice.

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Our registered nurses and birth injury legal team are ready to talk to you. Contact us for a free, no-risk case evaluation. We want to help you pursue justice and compensation.
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