Birth injuries that cause lifelong effects

On Behalf of | Mar 11, 2024 | Birth Injuries |

Birth is a complex process that involves potential risk of injury to both mother and child. If not handled properly, a newborn child can suffer birth injuries that could alter their life permanently.

While most birth injuries are manageable, some can result in devastating lifelong effects and require extensive medical care and rehabilitation. The following are some of the serious birth injuries associated with lifelong impact on a child’s life.

Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy

Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) occurs when there is a lack of oxygen and blood flow to the brain during childbirth. This can lead to severe brain damage and neurological impairment in the newborn. The effects of HIE can range from mild cognitive deficits to profound physical and intellectual disabilities, depending on the severity of the injury. Children with HIE may experience developmental delays and other lifelong challenges that require ongoing medical intervention and support.

Erb’s palsy

Another serious birth injury is Erb’s palsy, which results from damage to the brachial plexus nerves during birth often due to excessive force or stretching applied to the baby’s neck and shoulder area. This injury can lead to weakness or paralysis in the affected arm, causing significant functional limitations in daily activities. Children with Erb’s palsy may require surgeries, physical therapy and assistive devices to improve mobility and function.

Cerebral palsy

Brain damage during birth may lead to cerebral palsy, a group of neurological disorders that affect movement, muscle tone and coordination. This condition manifests as difficulties with muscle control, balance and coordination, alongside challenges in speech, vision, hearing and cognitive function. Cerebral palsy is a lifelong condition that requires ongoing therapy, medical care and support services to help manage symptoms and improve quality of life.

The effects of serious birth injury on a child’s life can be devastating. If caused by negligence, legal guidance may be helpful in determining the appropriate course of action to seek compensation for medical expenses, ongoing care and other damages.