Denver Perinatal Asphyxia Lawyers
When a medical professional fails to closely monitor a baby before birth, the baby can suffer lifelong harm. Perinatal asphyxia, also called birth asphyxia, cerebral asphyxia, or neonatal asphyxia, is the lack of oxygen to a baby that occurs before or during childbirth.
Many doctors misread the signs or neglect a fetus in distress until it’s too late. If your child suffered brain damage during the birthing process, you may have a medical malpractice claim against the physician and hospital. To speak to a top birth injury lawyer, please contact Leventhal & Puga, P.C., at (877) 433-3906. We will review your case at no cost and see if there is compensation available for your family.
Asphyxia means a lack of oxygen and/or blood flow to the brain. When a baby’s brain does not get enough oxygen or nutrients, the cells cannot function properly. This leads to a build-up of waste products in the cells that cause damage.
Symptoms of perinatal asphyxia in a newborn may include:
- Not breathing or very weak breathing
- Skin that is bluish, gray, or lighter than normal
- Low heart rate
- Poor muscle tone
- Weak reflexes
- Too much acid in the blood (acidosis)
- Low Apgar scores
Babies with mild or moderate asphyxia may recover fully; however, perinatal asphyxia can cause permanent injury. When the baby’s brain is deprived of oxygen for long enough, a type of brain damage called hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) can occur. Babies with HIE may suffer from permanent developmental delays, epilepsy, cognitive issues, motor skill development delays, and neurodevelopment delays.
Oxygen and blood flow to the brain can be blocked for a number of reasons before or during delivery, including:
- Too little oxygen in the mother’s blood before or during birth
- The placenta detaching from the uterus too soon (placental abruption)
- Prolonged or stressful delivery
- Problems with the umbilical cord (cord compression, cord knots)
- A serious infection in the mother or baby
- High or low blood pressure in the mother
- Baby’s airway is not formed properly
- Baby’s airway is blocked
- Baby’s blood cells cannot carry enough oxygen (anemia)
The most common medical errors leading to perinatal asphyxia are inadequate fetal monitoring, lack of clinical skills, noncompliance with clinical guidelines, failure to obtain senior medical staff assistance, and errors in drug administration.
When an OB/GYN, a nurse, or other medical professional is negligent and makes one of these errors, they fail to meet their standard of care to a patient - and may be liable for all of the injured child’s treatment costs.
If your child suffered from perinatal asphyxia and you believe it was due to medical negligence, you should contact an experienced personal injury attorney as quickly as possible. Our team at Leventhal & Puga, P.C., will do the research to determine what happened and who was responsible. We believe no child should suffer permanent injury due to a doctor’s failure to provide adequate care. If you’d like to speak with us about your potential case, call (303) 759-9945 for a no-cost consultation.