Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE)

Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE) Birth Injury

HIE Lawsuit Attorneys in Princeton, West Virginia

Katz Kantor Stonestreet & Buckner, PLLC is proud to stand up for the parents of infants born with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy, also called HIE and hypoxia, and, of course, newborns themselves. HIE is a form of brain damage suffered by a newborn due to oxygen deprivation or restricted blood flow, usually during pregnancy or childbirth. Many HIE cases can be traced back to the inexcusable mistakes and malpractice of medical professionals who failed to pay attention to the infant’s health, which is where our law firm’s comprehensive legal services become necessary.

If your child is living with HIE and its many complications – like developmental issues and physical disabilities – because of the mistakes of a doctor, nurse, or medical team, then your child could struggle for their whole life. You will also feel the financial strain caused by the specialized care and treatments your child will need throughout the years. It is our mission to get you every single penny of compensation available as the parent of a child born with hypoxia due to a medical professional’s errors.

In your HIE birth injury claim, we could demand compensation for:

  • Medical costs accrued during pregnancy and delivery
  • NICU treatment costs
  • Lifelong rehabilitative care for your child
  • Hardships you and your child experience due to the birth injury

The insurance companies that represent medical professionals and hospital groups do not want to pay out HIE claims because they know the total amount owed could easily reach into the millions of dollars. Be ready for the fight they put up by allowing us to represent you from start to finish!

Call (304) 713-2014 now to schedule your case consultationwith our Princeton HIE lawyers.

Five Common Causes of HIE

As mentioned, hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy is commonly caused by some form of medical malpractice. If a medical provider does not give the same level of care and attention to a pregnant mother and her child as another medical professional would have in the same situation, and that negligence leads to HIE, then there could be a convincing cause to file an HIE injury claim.

Five of the most common causes of HIE that can go unnoticed by a medical provider are:

  • Umbilical cord strangulation: During delivery, doctors and nurses must be careful to prevent the umbilical cord from wrapping around the infant, which can cause strangulation. An emergency C-section can be used to quickly complete the delivery if this hazard occurs.
  • Placental abruption: When the placenta separates from the uterus before birth, it is called placental abruption, an extremely dangerous condition that can starve the unborn child or dramatically reduce their blood-oxygen levels. Obstetricians need to pay close attention to a pregnant mother and her unborn child’s vital signs to recognize the signs of placental abruption.
  • Infection: In labor and delivery, a newborn can become infected with any diseases or bacteria that are affecting the mother. Severe infections can cause high blood toxicity, leading to HIE. Medical professionals should conduct tests if they suspect the child might be sick shortly after birth and use antibiotics as necessary.
  • Fetal heart failure: A sudden drop in blood pressure or oxygen levels can cause fetal heart failure or fetal distress, which is one of the most dangerous types of birth injury. Failing to monitor the child’s pulse and take action as needed can cause hypoxia.
  • Premature birth: Premature babies are at a noticeably higher risk of HIE and other birth injuries. Medical providers must take adequate steps to prevent premature birth. Failing to explore options with a pregnant mother can constitute medical malpractice answerable with a lawsuit.

Symptoms of HIE in a Newborn

Diagnosing HIE is not always simple. Mild to moderate cases of HIE will not always cause immediately noticeable complications, so it could be weeks or months until a child begins to show signs that something is wrong.

If you suspect your child might have an HIE-related birth injury, look for:

  • Eating or nursing difficulties
  • Sluggish movements with poor reflexes
  • Labored breathing
  • Bodily frailty
  • Seizures
  • Confused or lethargic state

Please call your pediatrician as soon as possible if your child is exhibiting symptoms of hypoxia. Call 911 if your child is suffering from seizures or breathing complications.

Can HIE Be Cured?

HIE causes brain damage that cannot be completely cured. Brain damage caused by HIE can also spread to healthy cells as the damaged cells die and release toxins into surrounding tissues. Therapeutic hypothermia – a medical treatment that involves cooling a newborn’s brain – can help slow or halt this dangerous process of spreading toxicity within the brain. Medical providers who do not use therapeutic hypothermia correctly or at all after noticing a newborn might be suffering some form of brain damage could be held liable for that mistake through an HIE birth injury claim.

Rehabilitative therapies can help alleviate or minimize some of the lifelong symptoms of HIE. For example, if a child is born with muscular weakness due to HIE, then physical therapy throughout their life can help strengthen their muscles and regain some degree of physical independence.

Get Legal Counsel & Moral Support

Knowing that your child is now struggling due to HIE – and perhaps will always struggle in this way – can be heartbreaking. Knowing the birth injury happened due to a medical provider’s negligence can be infuriating. When you are sorting through your emotions and trying to put your life back together, let our Princeton HIE attorneys get to work on making things better through an effective lawsuit filed on your behalf and that of your child. We know how much is at stake, so we will never slow down or retreat when representing you.

Schedule your FREE consultation today to begin. Do not delay.

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 Call (304) 713-2014 to schedule a free consultation today! We will travel to you if you are unable to make it to one of our offices.

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