Understanding Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE)

Each year, 30,000 newborn babies face health complications during the birthing process. One of the most severe conditions that can occur during childbirth is Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE). This is a condition that affects a baby’s brain due to lack of oxygen.

This condition requires immediate medical attention and treatment in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). A traumatic birth experience can cause an HIE medical diagnosis as well as a cerebral palsy diagnosis.

A medical mistake can sometimes cause a traumatic labor and delivery. If your child has an HIE diagnosis, it is important to contact an HIE attorney. The Yost Legal Group helps families affected by a hypoxic birth injury and other types of childbirth trauma.

What is HIE?

Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE) refers to brain damage or injury caused by oxygen deprivation during birth. An HIE brain injury occurs when the baby does not get enough oxygen to the brain or blood flow before, during, or after delivery.

If left untreated or not diagnosed promptly, HIE can lead to long-term disabilities such as:

– cerebral palsy

– developmental delays

– seizures

– and death

traumatic birth medical malpractice

What are the signs and symptoms of Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE)?

The symptoms of HIE vary depending on the severity of the injury.

Some common signs include:

– difficulty breathing or abnormal breathing patterns

– low muscle tone or limpness

– seizures or convulsions

– poor reflexes or response to stimuli

– an abnormal level of consciousness.

The causes of HIE can be due to various factors, such as:

– umbilical cord problems like prolapse or compression

– maternal infections

– placental abruption

– prolonged labor

– premature rupture of membranes

– medical negligence

Neonatal cooling is a treatment for babies with HIE

What are treatment options for HIE?

Hypothermia therapy is the only way to treat HIE. It lowers body temperature to prevent more harm to brain cells.

Cooling techniques can include a cooling blanket for whole-body cooling or a selective head cooling process. Hypothermia therapy should be initiated as soon as possible, preferably within six hours of birth.

In addition to hypothermia therapy, other supportive treatments such as oxygen therapy, seizure management, and monitoring vital signs are also necessary. A baby with HIE will require a nursing care plan, including working with a medical team providing significant medical care.

What is a usual nursing home plan for Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE)?

If you are a parent of a baby with cerebral palsy (CP) or Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE), it is essential to understand the nursing home plan for your child’s condition. HIE can result in long-term neurological damage.

A nursing home plan consists of various therapies and interventions that aim to improve the quality of life of children with HIE.

  1. Physical Therapy

Physical therapy is an integral part of the nursing home plan for children with HIE. The goal of physical therapy is to help children gain strength, improve mobility, and enhance gross motor skills. Physical therapists work on improving balance, coordination, and muscle tone through exercises such as stretching, crawling, standing, and walking.

  1. Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapy focuses on improving fine motor skills, such as grasping objects and hand-eye coordination. Children with HIE often struggle with basic activities such as holding utensils or coloring because of their limited dexterity.

Occupational therapists help improve skills by doing activities like playing with blocks or drawing.

  1. Speech Therapy

Speech therapy assists children with HIE in enhancing their communication skills. This therapy is beneficial for children who have difficulty speaking or rely on non-verbal methods due to their condition.

Speech therapists work on establishing communication through various techniques, such as sign language or picture exchange communication systems (PECS). They also focus on strengthening mouth muscles used in speaking and swallowing.

  1. Feeding Therapy

Feeding difficulties are common in children with HIE due to poor muscle control around the mouth or throat region. Feeding therapy aims at addressing these issues by teaching proper feeding techniques, such as chewing and swallowing, and addressing any difficulty in reflux or other digestive issues.

  1. Behavioral Therapy

Behavioral therapy is an essential part of the nursing home plan for children with HIE who may have developmental or behavioral issues due to their condition. Behavioral therapists work on the following:

  • improving social skills
  • managing behavior
  • addressing any emotional or mental health concerns that may arise

Understanding Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE)

How The Yost Legal Group Can Help

At The Yost Legal Group, our attorneys for birth injury know the challenges your family will face with an HIE diagnosis. Our experienced HIE lawyers are committed to helping families like yours.

If you file an HIE lawsuit, we will investigate what happened during the birthing process. If we uncover that the standard of care was not met, we will work to secure a financial recovery to cover your child’s medical care.

Our experienced team of birth injury lawyers will review all medical records and dig deep to get to the truth. It is important to us that your baby has the best quality of life possible.

If we prove that a medical mistake was made, we will seek justice for you and your family. Recovering the financial compensation needed to provide lifelong care for your child is what we do.

Our birth injury attorneys know that dealing with the legal process while caring for your newborn can be overwhelming. We are here to help you every step of the way.

Our medical malpractice lawyers take a systematic approach towards seeking justice for you and your family.

We investigate your case thoroughly. The Yost Legal Group has 40 years of experience helping parents understand the complex legal process and advocating for their child’s future.

You don’t have to face HIE alone. The Yost Legal Group is here to help.

Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE) is a serious condition that can affect newborns during childbirth due to oxygen deprivation.

It requires immediate medical attention and treatment in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).

Cooling techniques such as hypothermia therapy are effective in reducing further damage to the brain cells.

If your child was diagnosed with HIE, contact The Yost Legal Group at 1-800-Yost-Law for a free consultation. An experienced birth injury lawyer will determine if your child’s birth injury was due to medical negligence during the delivery.


Understanding Birth Injuries. What New Parents Need to Know

The birth of a child is a life-changing event. As a new parent, you want nothing but the best care for your baby during labor and delivery. However, sometimes things can go wrong, and the baby can sustain injuries during birth. According to recent studies, birth injuries occur in about 7 out of every 1,000 births in the USA. Some of these injuries are preventable.

Protecting families after a serious birth injury

Birth injuries can happen during a difficult delivery if the baby is larger than average or if complications arise during pregnancy or delivery.

The most common birth injuries include cerebral palsy, brachial plexus injuries, and hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE).

–      Cerebral palsy is caused by brain damage and affects muscle control and movement.

–      Brachial plexus injuries occur when the nerves that control the arm and hand are damaged during delivery.

–      HIE is a type of brain injury that can occur when the baby does not receive enough oxygen during delivery. HIE can lead to long-term issues such as seizure disorders, cerebral palsy, restricted brain and skull growth, and developmental delays.

Baby in NICU after suffering a birth injury.

Top reasons for fetal distress

As new parents, it’s important to know the top reasons for fetal distress. This knowledge can help you recognize signs of distress and take action to ensure you and your baby are safe and healthy.

Preventing birth injuries requires good communication between the OB/GYN and the hospital staff. Doctors and nurses must carefully monitor the baby’s vital signs during delivery and identify potential complications early on.

  1. Placenta Problems

The placenta is responsible for delivering oxygen and nutrients to the baby during pregnancy. Any problems with the placenta can lead to fetal distress.

–      Placental abruption occurs when the placenta separates from the uterus, causing bleeding and compromising the baby’s oxygen supply.

–      Placenta previa is where the placenta covers the cervix and blocks the baby’s path out of the uterus. It is another condition that can cause hemorrhage and compromise the baby’s oxygen supply.

These conditions require immediate medical attention to prevent serious harm to the baby and mother.

  1. Umbilical Cord Issues

The umbilical cord connects the baby to the placenta and carries oxygen and nutrients to the baby.

–      If the cord becomes compressed, twisted, or detached, it can restrict blood flow and cause fetal distress.

–      Conditions like nuchal cord occur when the cord wraps around the baby’s neck, causing compression and reduced oxygen supply.

–      Umbilical cord prolapse is another serious condition where the cord slips through the cervix before the baby, increasing the risk of oxygen deprivation and brain damage.

  1. Infection

Infections in the mother during pregnancy or in the baby during delivery can lead to fetal distress. For example, chorioamnionitis is an infection that affects the placenta and fluid around the baby, causing inflammation and reducing oxygen supply.

This infection can lead to premature birth and brain damage if left untreated. It’s important for expecting mothers to practice good hygiene and get regular prenatal care to prevent infections that can affect the baby.

  1. Maternal Health Problems

Certain health problems in expecting mothers can lead to fetal distress. For example, preeclampsia is a condition that causes high blood pressure and damage to organs like the uterus and liver.

Preeclampsia can lead to a decrease in blood flow to the placenta, causing fetal distress. Mothers with diabetes also have a higher risk of fetal distress due to the impact on blood sugar levels and increased likelihood of a large-bodied baby.

It’s important for pregnant women to maintain a healthy lifestyle and get regular checkups to monitor these health problems.

If a baby is experiencing fetal distress, doctors must act quickly to deliver the baby safely. In some cases, a C-section may be the best option. OB/GYNs and hospital staff can also use tools such as forceps and vacuum extractors carefully to avoid injury to the baby during delivery.

Fetal distress during labor and delivery leading to cerebral palsy diagnosis.

Did your baby have a cerebral palsy diagnosis?

Hearing a cerebral palsy diagnosis about your newborn infant is devastating as a new parent. You may ask yourself, why did my baby suffer brain trauma at birth? You may wonder if a medical mistake during childbirth caused your child’s birth injuries.

Cerebral palsy is a neurological disorder that affects movement and coordination. It can have a significant impact on your child’s life.

There are many possible causes of cerebral palsy, and not all cases are a result of medical malpractice. However, medical errors during the birthing process can lead to cerebral palsy.

–      If the hospital labor team fails to detect fetal distress during labor and delivery

–      If a doctor improperly uses medical equipment like forceps or a vacuum extractor

–      Lack of oxygen to the brain during birth can cause cerebral palsy.

Any of these mistakes can result in a brain injury from birth leading to cerebral palsy. It is essential to speak with an experienced attorney for cerebral palsy. At The Yost Legal Group, we can help determine the cause of the condition.

Our cerebral palsy lawyers are highly experienced and will review all medical records about your child’s birth injury. An experienced birth injury law firm can file a medical malpractice lawsuit on your behalf.

Experienced birth injury lawyers with a track record of success

If you suspect that your baby’s birth injury could have been prevented, speak with an experienced birth injury lawyer. A birth injury attorney can review the medical records and help determine whether a medical mistake was made during delivery.

If a medical error is made, our birth injury team will work to get a lifetime of care for your child. At The Yost Legal Group, our experienced birth trauma lawyers are here to help you in this difficult time.

If your baby has been diagnosed with a birth injury, you want to know what happened. With an HIE diagnosis or an infant brain injury, we will look into the risk factors. A CP lawyer will fight on your behalf to secure the funds to pay for your child’s care.

At The Yost Legal Group, we have successfully filed thousands of birth injury lawsuits when medical mistakes were made.

We can help you navigate the complex legal system and work to ensure your family receives the financial compensation you need to care for your child. Contact us today at 800-967-8529 for a free consultation.