Periventricular leukomalacia (PVL) is an injury to the brain which occurs when tissue deep in the baby’s brain, called the white matter, dies away or is damaged. If a baby’s brain does not receive enough oxygen during labor and delivery, the brain cells in the baby’s white matter can die or be damaged. The patches of damaged or dying brain cells which lead to a diagnosis of PVL can be seen on brain imaging studies, such as ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), which are tests typically performed on infants whenever there is suspicion the baby did not receive enough oxygen during labor and delivery.
The severity of PVL varies from child to child, depending on the size and location of the damaged brain tissue. Infants who suffer PVL are more likely to develop cerebral palsy (CP) because the brain injury caused by PVL can damage the nerve cells that control movement. Nerve cells damaged by PVL can cause the growing child’s muscles to tighten, stiffen and uncontrollably contract and spasm. Muscle groups in any part of the body may be affected, with involuntary leg spasms and contraction being the most common. Severe damage caused by PVL can also cause seizures and developmental delays.
There is no treatment for PVL. Monitoring a baby for development of PVL and managing the problems caused by this brain damage are the responsibility of your baby’s doctors.
PVL can severely impact your child’s development and quality of life. If your child suffered a brain injury at birth, contact The Yost Legal Group today at 1-800-YOST-LAW (800-403-7259). The attorneys at Yost Legal Group are experienced, caring professionals ready to investigate your claim with compassion and determination. Call us today to receive a free, confidential consultation about your possible case.
We handle all cases on a contingency fee basis. This means you will never pay an attorney’s fee up front, and you owe us nothing unless we win your case.