What Happens If a Child Is Born With Birth Asphyxia?

Birth asphyxia is a complication that can occur during labor and cause mild to fatal injuries to a baby. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that two-thirds of newborn deaths are preventable if effective treatments are implemented at birth and in the first week of life; however, sometimes doctors and medical staff make mistakes with these treatments. When mistakes cause birth asphyxia, you may want to seek compensation by hiring an attorney to file a birth injury lawsuit.  

Birth Asphyxia Defined

birth asphyxia

The word asphyxia refers to a lack of oxygen. A baby’s brain, muscles, and organs depend on a consistent flow of oxygen, and this is key to a safe and successful delivery. However, complications can arise during labor that cause asphyxia, including:

  • Long or difficult delivery
  • Blocked airway
  • Malformed or underdeveloped airway
  • Pinched or kinked umbilical cord
  • Insufficient blood oxygenation in the mother

Diagnosing Birth Asphyxia

After a tough delivery, a doctor might suspect birth asphyxia if a baby is weak or not breathing, appears pale or blue, has trouble flexing muscles, or reacts slowly. However, officially diagnosing birth asphyxia to begin treatment often involves:

  • APGAR Scoring
  • Cord Blood Gasses Measurement
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

After birth asphyxia, a baby can face short- and long-term consequences, including severe brain injury, paralysis, cognitive deficiencies, and even death. Families affected by asphyxia should consult with a lawyer to discuss the possibility of proving:

  • A doctor made a mistake during labor, causing asphyxia
  • The asphyxia directly led to the baby’s injury or disability

Legal Assistance You Can Rely On

If you believe your baby’s birth asphyxia and resulting injuries were directly caused by the delivering doctor and medical staff, you should speak with an attorney. The Holton Law Firm has been a trusted source of legal help in our community for decades, and we can assist with your birth injury lawsuit, too. Get started by filling out the online contact form on our website.