Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE; Birth Asphyxia) Attorneys in Warren, Michigan

At Michigan Cerebral Palsy Attorneys, our Warren, Michigan hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) lawyers encourage you to reach out for legal help today. Our team of Warren HIE attorneys and experts have decades of experience securing the funds for their clients that allow them to participate in treatment and therapy programs, have equal opportunity, and more fulfilling lives.

Call our hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy attorneys for a free legal consultation—to contact our Warren, Michigan hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) lawyers, you may fill out our online contact form or call us toll-free at (888) 592-1857. If we decide medical malpractice caused of your loved one’s HIE diagnosis and take your case, we will not charge you until we win or settle.

Understanding Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy

Basic Facts about HIE

Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (also known as intrapartum asphyxia, neonatal encephalopathy, or birth asphyxia) is a type of brain injury that results from fetal oxygen deprivation. Occurring before, during, or just after delivery, neonates are susceptible to brain damage when insufficient amounts of oxygen in the blood (hypoxia) reach the brain (ischemia). Unless immediate hypothermia treatment is started to halt the damage, hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy results in cell death and lifelong brain damage or, in the worst case, death.

Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy is known to cause injuries and conditions including mild to severe cerebral palsy (CP) and its associated impairments, motor function impairments, developmental delays, neurodevelopmental issues, intellectual impairments, seizures and epilepsy, and death.

What Causes Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy?

HIE from Medical Malpractice in Warren, Michigan

Unfortunately, hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy is often the consequence of medical errors and negligence made around the time of a baby’s delivery. In this section, we will discuss how the mismanagement, misdiagnosis, or failure to treat a few complications of pregnancy and delivery can result in birth asphyxia.

  • Uterine Rupture: Uterine rupture is an emergency labor and delivery situation that occurs when the forces of labor cause the uterus to tear, frequently expelling the unborn baby into the abdomen of the mother. Uterine rupture interferes with the amount of oxygenated blood reaching the baby and the baby’s brain, ultimately increasing the likelihood of hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy.
  • Birth Trauma: The extreme forces of delivery may result in a form of neonatal birth trauma known as intracranial hemorrhages, or brain bleeding. Brain bleeds may result from complications including:
    • Uterine Hyperstimulation: The accumulative effects of strong uterine contractions and prolonged labor can decrease oxygen flow to the fetus’s brain. Anything that interferes with the natural movement of the baby through the mother’s pelvis can cause uterine hyperstimulation, such as cephalopelvic disproportion (CPD) or macrosomia. Hyperstimulation can also occur as the result of misusing Pitocin or Cytotec.
    • The incorrect use of vacuum extractors and forceps often leads to bleeding within the cranium of the baby. These injuries can interfere with how much oxygen reaches the baby’s head, resulting in hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy.
    • Failure to Perform an Emergency C-Section: When fetal distress signals are present, failing to swiftly perform a Cesarean section operation can result in intracranial hemorrhages and oxygen deprivation, both of which cause hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy.
  • Warren, Michigan Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE) LawyersPreterm Birth and Post Term Delivery: Premature birth is one of the most common causes of HIE because premature infants often haven’t fully developed their lungs enough to withstand labor and life outside the mother’s womb. Post-term pregnancies increase the likelihood of a weakened placenta, cephalopelvic disproportion, and umbilical cord problems.
  • Health Problems in the Mother or Baby: When medical professionals fail to diagnose, treat, control, or prevent health complications in the mother or the baby, the baby has a greater chance of developing hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy. Maternal and fetal health issues that can cause HIE include:
  • Umbilical Cord Problems: The umbilical cord is the baby’s lifeline—it is responsible for carrying important nutrients, blood, and oxygen from the mother to the baby. The following umbilical cord complications are known to cause HIE:
    • Umbilical Cord Prolapse and Compression: A prolapsed umbilical cord falls into the birth canal before the baby during delivery. A compressed umbilical cord is the result of the umbilical cord becoming squeezed between the baby’s body and the mother’s body during delivery. The passage of oxygenated blood and nutrients is restricted in cases of cord compression.
    • Nuchal Cord: A nuchal cord occurs when the umbilical cord wraps around the baby’s neck. The causes of nuchal cords may include multiple gestations, macrosomia, long cord length, nutritional deficiencies, polyhydramnios, and breech presentation. Nuchal cords are associated with injuries including umbilical cord prolapse, vasa previa, HIE, and decreased fetal development.

Therapy and Treatment for Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy

HIE Signs, Diagnosis and Treatment in Warren, Michigan

Warren, Michigan medical professionals are obligated to thoroughly evaluate newborn babies for clinical signs of hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy. If a hypoxic ischemic event occurred during pregnancy or delivery and/or the baby shows signs of HIE, medical professionals must accurately and quickly make a diagnosis and begin hypothermia treatment.

Hypothermia treatment is the only known treatment for hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy. In the process, the body temperatures of babies with HIE are lowered down to around 33.5 degrees Celsius for 72 hours. Babies must have suffered the hypoxic ischemic event within six hours of the onset of treatment, show signs of blood acidity, and be at least 36 gestational weeks old. The process allows for brain cells to recover. To read more about eligibility requirements, visit our Hypothermia Treatment page here.

If a baby doesn’t undergo hypothermia treatment as a newborn and/or goes on to show signs and symptoms of HIE later in childhood, he or she is encouraged to participate in other supportive forms of therapy including physical therapy, occupational therapy, recreational therapy, speech-language pathology, and more.

Legal Help for Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy in Warren, Michigan

Warren, Michigan Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE) Lawyers

Roughly 2-9 of every 1,000 live births results in hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE), many of which are the consequence of medical malpractice. Unfortunately, many victims will never pursue legal action. At Michigan Cerebral Palsy Attorneys, our Warren, Michigan hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) lawyers are committed to ensuring all victims of malpractice obtain the financial compensation necessary to live lives of good health, rehabilitation, and equal opportunity.

To learn whether or not medical malpractice caused your loved one’s injuries, call our Warren, Michigan hypoxic ischemic (HIE) lawyers for a free legal consultation. If we take your case, you will not be charged until your case is won or settled. Call our Warren, Michigan hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) lawyers and attorneys toll-free at (888) 592-1857 or fill out our online contact form.

Related Reading on Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE)

Our Warren, Michigan hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) lawyers have gathered the following resources on HIE, cerebral palsy, and birth injury for your convenience. We encourage you to reach out with any questions, concerns, or case inquiries you may have.

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