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March 2, 2023

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Have you or your baby suffered a birth injury in the delivery process due to medical malpractice? Did the obstetrician make an error that caused perinatal hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy?

The birth injury lawyers at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers handle medical malpractice and negligence cases and can serve as your legal advocates.

Call a Chicago hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy attorney today at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call). Alternatively, use the contact form to schedule a free case evaluation to discuss the legal rights of both mother and child-preventable birthing trauma victims. Let our HIE lawyers review your case and seek justice on your behalf.

HIE birthing-injury-lawsuit

What Is Neonatal Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE)?

During pregnancy and birthing, the umbilical cord and placenta supply the developing child with nutrients and oxygen essential to healthy development.

When the air supply is reduced or shut off entirely to a baby’s brain, it can cause your infant to suffer hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy. HIE is caused by oxygen deprivation and limited blood flow and could be due to medical malpractice.

When insufficient blood flows to the child’s brain, the newborn can go into fetal distress, which can have severe implications for its well-being in its developmental years and adulthood.

In some of these asphyxia cases, newborns may develop cerebral palsy or other neurological difficulties, requiring comprehensive medical care. A child can also suffer from cerebral damage due to severe perinatal asphyxia.

These birth injuries may be due to medical malpractice, and our attorneys will gladly assist you with legal counsel regarding a lawsuit.

Chicago Medical Malpractice Lawyers For Perinatal Encephalopathy Cases

The extent of oxygen deprivation to the child commonly determines the magnitude of the injury. However, even short-term diminished hemoglobin flow to a fetus can have dire consequences on your child’s life as permanent cerebral damage can occur within minutes.

You could file a legal claim if your child’s condition resulted from medical malpractice by a medical professional.

At Rosenfeld Injury Attorneys, LLC, our HIE lawyers will obtain the necessary medical records and work with medical experts to help you file your complaint. Call one of our birth injury lawyers to set up your free consultation.

Ischemic Encephalopathy And Cerebral Palsy

Profound hypotension and cardiac arrest can lead to cerebral injury with limited oxygenated air and blood flow.

Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) involving intrapartum expectancy (lack of oxygenated air) is often the leading cause of:

  • Cerebral palsy (CP)
  • Developmental or cognitive delays
  • More apparent and significant motor impairments as the child matures

Research shows that approximately one out of every ten CP cases results from asphyxia due to a cerebral birth injury. The remaining 90% are caused by numerous contributing factors, including birthing difficulties, premature childbirth, and severe complications after delivery.

The common risk factors for developing perinatal hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy leading to CP include:

  • Acute maternal hypotension
  • Maternal seizures
  • Cephalopelvic disproportion injuries
  • Cranium pressure changes the skull’s shape, resulting in bleeding or decreased hemoglobin levels.
  • Impaired flow of hemoglobin to the brain during labor
  • Insufficient oxygen supply due to an interruption in breathing
  • Intrapartum hemorrhage
  • Labor and delivery stresses
  • Medical negligence
  • De-oxygenated hemoglobin due to poorly functioning lungs
  • Part and cardiac problems
  • Placental abruption
  • Prolapsed cord
  • Ruptured Vasa Previa
  • Trauma injuries
  • Umbilical cord injury before or during labor
  • Uterine rupture injuries

The length and severity of a lack of oxygen in the baby’s brain are risk factors determining the extent of HIE brain damage. If you suspect medical malpractice, our attorneys can answer your questions in your free case review.

Diagnosing Cerebral Palsy-Associated Cerebral Hypoxia Ischemia

Doctors suspecting cerebral hypoxia-ischemia can diagnose the condition using neural imaging techniques, including MRIs. Additional diagnostic tools might include MR spectroscopy [1] and diffusion-weighted imaging.

The doctor might diagnose CP-related cerebral hypoxia-ischemia if childbirth was traumatic or contributing risk factors are present, including a fetal stroke or neonatal brain injury during pregnancy.

Doctors often diagnose CP by observing the child’s immature and mature brain in the months and years following birth when there are noticeable visible signs, including:

  • Delayed developmental milestones
  • Neurological developmental delays
  • Impaired motor function
  • Motor skill developmental delays
  • Clinical observation of delayed growth
  • HIE-related cerebral edema

HIE & Medical Malpractice

Many victims of HIE suffer from medical malpractice when doctors, nurses, and other health care providers fail to provide the highest quality of care to their patients. HIE is a very severe condition that can lead to death or permanent cerebral injury.

Do you suspect medical staff, hospital, or medical center negligence led to your child’s HIE? Call our Chicago law firm attorneys at (888) 424-5757 to schedule a free consultation.

Let our Chicago HIE attorneys inform you of all your legal options, provide advice, and answer your questions regarding a medical malpractice lawsuit.

Systemic Hypothermia Therapy Treatment

The doctor may diagnose HIE due to the child’s abnormal heart rate and blood pressure. The baby may be experiencing cardiorespiratory failure, usually a fatal condition.

Medical professionals will treat perinatal asphyxial encephalopathy by cooling the body and head through therapeutic hypothermia to lower the baby’s body temperature immediately after birth. The treatment minimizes hypoxic-ischemic neuronal death.

Mild systemic hypothermia therapy effectively slows down the brain’s cellular decay and damage process caused by the hypoxia ischemic cerebral injury. Thus, reducing body temperature through promising therapy treatments can minimize the long-term devastating consequences of HIE, although the effects of existing cerebral damage will continue.

The beneficial results of mild hypothermia occur at multiple locations, minimizing early cell death in newborns surviving birth asphyxia [2] in the highly vulnerable immature cerebral regions. However, to avoid delayed cell death, the doctors must commence the hypothermia treatment before the onset of delayed energy failure, particularly excitatory features like seizures.

According to the National Institute of Health, specific high-dose phenobarbital therapy administered intravenously over one hour is an effective post-hypoxic treatment to reduce seizures in severely asphyxiated newborns.

Hypoxic-Ischemic Cerebral Injury-Related Emotional And Behavioral Disorders

Many infants with hypoxic-ischemic cerebral birth injuries will develop emotional and behavioral disorders that result from a brain injury in a cerebral region that controls emotional regulation. In some cases, the emotional and behavioral disorders result from disability-related frustration, social situation, or specific limitations as the child matures.

Toddlers and young children with hypoxic-ischemic cerebral birth injury have a higher risk of emotional and behavioral conditions, including:

  • Hyperactivity
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Social issues
  • Attention-related challenges
  • ASD (autism spectrum disorder) [3]

The doctor may recommend cognitive behavioral therapy at a young age focusing on the child’s attitudes, beliefs, and thoughts that influence emotions and behaviors.

The therapy might involve training on initiating conversation, making eye contact, and other skills and provide coping mechanisms for children suffering from depression, anxiety, and ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder).

Medical Malpractice Attorneys For Oxygen Deprived Birth Injuries

Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC, birth injury attorneys, assists victims in seeking compensation for infants who have suffered perinatal encephalopathy or died from birth injuries during labor and delivery in Chicago and every county throughout Illinois.

Our Chicago, Illinois, birth injury attorneys evaluate medical malpractice cases like yours to determine if negligent care was present and file a medical malpractice lawsuit to ensure that the victims’ future medical needs are met.

Medical professionals and hospitals recognize the significance of a birth injury lawsuit from a professional and economic perspective. Consequently, our attorneys can vigorously defend even the most straightforward negligence cases.

Speak to our Chicago birth injury attorneys at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or use the contact form today to schedule a free consultation.

Attorney-Client Relationship

If our attorneys accept your case, you can be assured that all sensitive information will remain confidential through the attorney-client relationship. Our Chicago HIE attorney only gets paid if you obtain a settlement or a jury verdict in your case. There is no money out of your pocket.

Resources: [1] Cedars Sinai, [2] NIH, [3] NIH

Client Reviews

Jonathan Rosenfeld was professionally objective, timely, and knowledgeable. Also, his advice was extremely effective regarding my case. In addition, Jonathan was understanding and patient pertaining to any of my questions or concerns. I was very happy with the end result and I highly recommend Jonathan Rosenfeld.

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Jonathan helped my family heal and get compensation after our child was suffered a life threatening injury at daycare. He was sympathetic and in constant contact with us letting us know all he knew every step of the way. We were so blessed to find Jonathan!

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Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial.

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