Parents dream of giving birth to healthy babies. While most are born with no major health issues, many suffer brain injuries while in the womb or during labor and delivery.
A recent study conducted by Imperial College London and Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust has estimated that for every 1,000 babies born in England every year, five will suffer from brain injuries. In 2015, data showed that 3,418 babies suffered symptoms of brain injury at or shortly after birth, accounting for a rate of 5.14 per 1,000 live births. The rate for full term births (greater than 37 weeks gestation) was 3.47 per 1,000 live births. The rate of brain injury for preterm births was 25.88 per 1,000 live births—a difference of seven times when compared to full term births.
It is hopeful that this research will help the medical field find ways to prevent brain injury in babies. No parent wants their child to suffer a brain injury. A brain injury is a serious condition. Recuperating from one can be impossible, and it’s very likely that a child could suffer from one for his or her entire life. It can also lead to other medical conditions such as cerebral palsy, deafness, blindness and learning disabilities.
Often, symptoms of brain injury are not apparent until later in life. However, medical staff are trained to look for signs that may indicate a brain injury, such as seizures, bleeding in the brain, oxygen deprivation, stroke, meningitis and other infections.
Causes of Brain Injury
In the past, a brain injury present at birth was often attributed to medical malpractice on behalf of the doctors. It was believed that doctors were negligent during labor and delivery by not providing the baby with enough oxygen or by using forceps and other tools too aggressively.
Research shows that genetic factors and the mother’s health during pregnancy can also contribute to brain injuries. For example, an abnormality in the placenta, infections, stroke, bleeding during pregnancy and thyroid problems in the mother can all cause a baby to suffer a brain injury at birth.
Signs of Brain Injury
Some symptoms of brain injury are noticeable right after birth, while others may not become apparent for months for even years. If you notice the following symptoms in your baby, he or she may have a brain injury:
- Extreme tiredness
- Difficulty sleeping
- Difficulty feeding
- Constant fussiness/crying
- Stiff neck
- Abnormally shaped spine or head
- Light sensitivity
- Missing milestones
Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer
If your child suffered a brain injury during birth, consider filing a claim. If your child’s injury was caused by medical malpractice or some other type of negligence, you may be able to seek compensation for damages such as medical bills, pain and suffering, and disability.
The team at Dolan Dobrinsky Rosenblum Bluestein, LLP is here to help. Our personal injury lawyers can help you in your time of need. Have you or a loved one suffered a serious injury? If so, contact our team at (305) 371-2692 or visit us online.