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Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy Can Cause Newborn Death

There are many preparations that occur before a child is born.  The nursery is decorated, diapers are purchased and the crib is assembled.  However, what parents do not prepare for is a serious birth injury. One of the most frightening experiences new parents face is hearing that their child has suffered birth trauma, such as hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy. defines hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy as "damage to cells in the central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord) from inadequate oxygen."  Basically, this birth injury occurs when the brain is deprived of oxygen.  It can lead to newborn death, developmental delay, mental retardation or cerebral palsy.

Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy results from low oxygen, when adequate blood supply is unable to reach the brain.  Any time the brain is deprived of much needed oxygen, brain damage can occur.  Oxygen deprivation is often referred to as asphyxia or hypoxia. 

The following can cause this devastating birth injury:

  • Prolonged labor
  • Delayed C-section
  • Infant remains in birth canal too long
  • Umbilical cord is prolapsed
  • Fetal heartbeat is misinterpreted or misread
  • Physician didn't respond in a timely manner
  • Medical negligence

Hypoxia is usually identified immediately following the birth.  Some of the signs of hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy include seizure, coma, loss of brainstem signs and loss of deep tendon reflexes.

If your child has suffered from hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy, you should contact an experienced St. Louis medical malpractice lawyer at the Law Offices of Alvin Wolff Jr. today at (314) 241-2500 or (877) 241-1020 for a free case evaluation.  When medical negligence causes a birth injury, you can and should hold the physician or hospital accountable.  You could be entitled to compensation for your child's injuries.

Attorney Alvin Wolff has successfully represented 8,000 cases over the last 30 years and can help you.