How are HIE and Cerebral Palsy Related?
Posted on July 25, 2023 in Medical Malpractice
Many factors and events leading up to birth and during delivery can cause hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE). The results can be devastating and life-changing, particularly when a misdiagnosis or medical error causes the condition.
Cerebral palsy is one of many health challenges resulting from hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy. If your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy, a team of Portland cerebral palsy attorneys is ready to fight for you so that your compensation needs are met.
Time limits apply to any claim, so immediate action is required.
What is HIE?
Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy is a disorder of the brain caused by a lack of oxygen. Health issues affecting the mother or surrogate can be disregarded during pregnancy, or complications at birth may be addressed inappropriately. Brain cells begin to die when they are deprived of oxygen, resulting in cognitive and physical impairments. The length of oxygen deprivation compounds the severity of the injuries. Cerebral palsy is a motor function that can become impaired due to HIE.
HIE is not always preventable, but very often it is. A Portland hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy lawyer can review the details of your case and help you explore your legal options after a HIE diagnosis.
Cerebral Palsy as a Result of HIE
When the brain functions as it should, neurons will send messages to the muscles in a precise pattern, allowing muscle movement to occur in a controlled manner. When HIE damages the part of the brain responsible for sending these signals, the muscles will lose tone and become very rigid while moving spastically. Medications or even surgeries may be needed to relieve the tension.
Cerebral palsy is the term for a group of health disorders that alter the muscles and their ability to move. These disorders are lifelong, and the challenges they pose vary significantly. The condition does not worsen, so age does not create deteriorating symptoms, except for muscular issues such as rigidness or shortening.
Factors Contributing to HIE and Cerebral Palsy
Numerous conditions can cause HIE. Anyone affected by these complications may experience a birth with HIE complications leading to cerebral palsy. An attorney can help determine if a child’s cerebral palsy resulted from a specific deficiency in care.
- Improperly monitored high-risk pregnancies
- Placenta complications such as placenta previa, placental abruption, and placental insufficiency
- Complications with the umbilical cord leading to oxygen restriction
- Infections passed from mother to infant
- Premature birth prevention and prolonged labor
- Improper fetal monitoring
Frequency of HIE and Cerebral Palsy
Unfortunately, there has not been a decline in the incidence of HIE even with technological advancement, and HIE continues to be a life-threatening issue for newborns in the United States. Up to 60% of infants affected by HIE at birth will develop severe disabilities, including cerebral palsy, or die. HIE continues to remain one of the most severe birth complications for newborns at full term. Even developed countries experience 1.5 to 2.5 births affected by HIE per 1000 births.
Speak with a Portland Cerebral Palsy Attorney Today
Cerebral palsy caused by HIE is a lifelong health disorder affecting your child. Continued treatment and specialized healthcare can quickly result in mounting medical bills. Paulson Coletti Trial Attorneys PC takes these diagnoses seriously and has a proven success rate in medical malpractice cases. We are committed to fighting vigorously for justice on your family’s behalf.
We understand the challenges you are up against and ensure that you will not face them alone. A consultation with our team is free, and we will not receive payment until we secure compensation for you.