In the United States alone, over 1 million people currently have some form of brain damage. Unfortunately, most of this statistic is infants. When a baby suffers brain damage, the costs can become astronomical. Infant head injuries typically occur during the delivery process, which leads to brain damage.
Leading Causes of Infant Head Injuries
One of the leading causes of infant brain damage is lack of oxygen shortly after birth. Per the American Journal of Neuroradiology, perinatal asphyxia happens at an alarming rate. Almost 10 out of every 1,000 newborns experience lack of oxygen. Correct medical monitoring and treatment could have prevented most of the brain damage cases.
Brain damage caused by lack of oxygen falls into two different categories: anoxia and hypoxia. Hypoxia occurs when the infant is deprived of the adequate amount of oxygen, leading to mild to moderate brain damage. Apoxia occurs when the infant undergoes a total lack of oxygen, which can lead to severe brain damage. Both hypoxia and anoxia can lead to cerebral palsy and a host of other medical disorders.
Delivery Risks & Infant Head Injuries
The risks of infant head injuries are umbilical cord problems, blocked airways and placental eruptions. A twisted, prolapsed, or knotted umbilical cord can cut off an infant’s oxygen supply. Also, physicians cut the umbilical cord much too soon. This cuts off the newborn’s oxygen supply before they are breathing properly on their own. Furthermore, if an umbilical cord gets wrapped around an infant’s neck, doctors have only a few precious minutes to unwrap it before oxygen deprivation begins.
Another issue where a competent medical staff is needed is when a newborn has a blocked airway. Mucous can sometimes become lodged in an infant’s lungs, constricting the airway. Healthcare providers must act quickly in order to prevent long-term medical problems. When they don’t, they are at fault.
Physical Trauma During Labor and Delivery
Physical trauma during labor and delivery may also lead to baby brain damage. Excessive pulling is usually the culprit. If a doctor pulls too hard or in an abnormal way, a variety of injuries including brain damage may happen. Tools during labor contribute to head injuries, as well. Doctors must use tools like a vacuum-extraction tool or forceps with experience and caution when delivering an infant. If used the improper way, brain damage, as well as other physical injuries, may occur.
Also, extended periods of pushing and contractions during a long, difficult labor can result in brain damage. This typically occurs when the baby’s brain and head are constantly knocked and pushed against the mother’s pelvis. An experienced doctor should know when it is time for an emergency c-section.
Help After Infant Head Injuries
It is important to remember that if your child’s birth injuries are a result of medical negligence and carelessness, the medical staff, hospital, and/or physician may be liable for damages. A complex litigation attorney can help. At The Michael Brady Lynch Firm, our lawyers have decades of experience helping injured people get justice and full compensation for injuries caused negligence. The Michel Brady Lynch Firm regularly takes on the largest corporations in the world with a track record of proven success and results. Contact The Michael Brady Lynch Firm today, and our attorneys will review your case for free and help you protect your rights. For your complimentary consultation, call our office now.