Even Short Term Oxygen Deprivation at Birth May Result in Developmental Delays

Our Illinois birth injury attorneys worry about babies that are born with any type of oxygen deprivation, because even if severe brain injury does not result immediately there still may be cognitive and developmental injuries and defects that result later on in the child’s life. According to the American Psychological Association‘s study and Science Blog, even slight oxygen deprivation may be dangerous to babies, especially those babies that are born premature because they are typically more susceptible and vulnerable than full term babies. This type of lack of oxygen injury may not present itself until later on, and is not as easy to spot as an immediate injury caused by oxygen deprivation at birth.

When any baby (premature or full term) is born and suffers from oxygen deprivation for a significant amount of time, there may be severe brain damage that results and that is apparent immediately. This type of birth injury is often times preventable, but sometimes the damage to the baby occurs anyway due to the doctor’s negligence and the doctor’s failure to exercise the appropriate level of care. This severe brain injury can lead to a lifetime of medical care and rehabilitation and is often times the subject of a negligence birth injury lawsuit against the doctor or hospital responsible.

However, the type of birth injury that is less obvious, at least immediately, results from a shorter period of oxygen deprivation to babies that may be more vulnerable (such as premature babies). Studies have shown that premature babies that suffered from oxygen deprivation ended up more likely to have language developmental, as well as other cognitive developmental problems, that become apparent over time. This psychological study and finding show that the effects of oxygen deprivation are not just all or nothing and that there may be more of a gray area in terms of what any level of oxygen deprivation may do to a newborn.

Many birth injury lawsuits are filed by parents when their baby suffered a severe birth injury, such as a brain injury, cerebral palsy, or another developmental defect, due to a significant lack of oxygen at birth. However, parents may not realize the long term effects of even a slight oxygen deprivation if the baby seems to be fine, both physical and mentally, shortly after birth. However, if these problems arise later in the child’s development, the family may still have options available to them. If a doctor or other hospital staff member was negligent in causing or delaying the oxygen flow to the baby even for a short period of time, and any injury to the baby did result, please contact a birth injury attorney to discuss the options available to you and your family.

Our personal injury law firm has helped victims of birth injuries all over Illinois, and have helped recover millions of dollars for the medical bills, pain and suffering, and other damages sustained as a result of another’s negligence. If you or a loved one gave birth to a baby that suffered a birth injury resulting from a lack of oxygen at birth, and signs of this injury appeared either immediately or later in the child’s development, please contact our birth injury attorneys immediately to discuss what has happened to you or your family and what next steps may be available to you.

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