An infant who has a neonatal stroke may have life-long disabilities and require ongoing support and care. In many cases, these strokes occur because of preventable complications or birth injuries. If you believe this happened to your child, or if the doctor missed a neonatal stroke diagnosis and this delayed treatment, you may be eligible to pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit.
Call the Birth Injury Lawyers Group today at 1-800-222-9529. You can connect with a birth injury lawyer in your state for a no-cost case review. They can help you understand your options for holding the doctor and hospital liable at no out-of-pocket cost to your family.
Neonatal Stroke Lawsuits & Injury Cases
A doctor or another healthcare provider can cause or contribute to a neonatal stroke, or worsen complications, in a number of ways. This includes:
- Failing to monitor mother and baby before, during, and after delivery
- Failing to take precautions when there is an increased risk of neonatal stroke
- Failing to perform a Cesarean section (C-section) when necessary
- Inexpertly or improperly using forceps or a vacuum device
- Dropping the infant after birth
- Failing to recognize signs of a neonatal stroke or providing inadequate treatment
To prove the doctor acted in one or more of these negligent ways and violated the acceptable standard of care, your attorney will call on a medical expert witness who practices near you and handles high-risk deliveries. This doctor will be able to testify to:
- The acceptable standard of care based on the facts of your case
- If they believe your doctor upheld this standard of care
- How your doctor’s actions or inaction caused your child’s injuries
This is a key part of proving any type of birth injury medical malpractice case. If you can build a strong argument and file a lawsuit before your state’s statute of limitations expires, you may be able to recover damages that include:
- Medical care costs
- Therapy and rehabilitation
- Other types of care and support
- Out-of-pocket costs
- Pain and suffering damages
Neonatal Stroke Types
There are two types of neonatal strokes:
- Arterial ischemic stroke
- Hemorrhagic stroke
Arterial ischemic strokes are most common and occur because a blood clot, structural issue, or another problem cuts off the blood flow within the infant’s brain. Hemorrhagic strokes occur due to bleeding in the brain and may be the result of trauma or other factors.
Neonatal Stroke Causes
Some possible complications and injuries that can cause a neonatal stroke include:
- Oxygen deprivation, known as hypoxia
- Placental abruption
- Head trauma during delivery
In some cases, the mother’s health can lead to a neonatal stroke in their infant. Some conditions that raise the risk include:
- Coagulation or bleeding disorders
- Maternal infections
- Congenital heart disease
Neonatal Stroke Symptoms
One of the earliest signs that a newborn suffered a neonatal stroke is often a seizure. This may occur in the first 24 hours after birth. Other signs include:
- Lethargy and difficulty waking up the infant
- Weakness or paralysis on one side of the body
- Problems with feeding
Neonatal strokes can also cause neurological problems such as developmental delays and intellectual disabilities. However, there are few symptoms of these until the child misses developmental milestones or falls behind their peers in school. Signs of a neonatal stroke in a toddler or older child include:
- Slow in reaching milestones such as crawling, walking, and talking
- Speech delays
- Problems with coordination
- Balance difficulties
Neonatal Stroke Diagnosis and Treatment
When a baby suffers a neonatal stroke, getting a prompt diagnosis and assessment is imperative. If your baby exhibits any signs of a stroke, the healthcare team should order diagnostic testing. This could include:
- Blood tests
- A cranial (skull) ultrasound
- A computed tomography (CT) scan
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
Depending on the symptoms and how the stroke affected the infant, treatment may include:
- Medication to stop seizures
- Other medications
- Therapy and rehabilitation
- Early intervention programs once the baby reaches preschool age
Children who suffered a neonatal stroke may also require ongoing monitoring and evaluation as they age. This allows the doctor to prescribe therapy or other treatments for any developmental or neurological effects as they appear.
Neonatal Stroke Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know if my baby has a neonatal Stroke?
Some of the signs you may see in an older baby or toddler who suffered a neonatal stroke include:
- Weakness on one side of the body
- Leaving one hand in a fist
- Does not bring their hands together to clap or play
If you see any of these signs in your child, you should talk to your doctor. Your baby may have had a neonatal stroke. Your doctor may refer you to a pediatric neurologist who can put a plan together to address your child’s needs.
Can a neonatal stroke be fatal?
A neonatal stroke can be fatal. A stroke is a medical emergency and requires immediate medical attention.
Who is liable for a neonatal stroke?
A doctor, another medical practitioner, and/or the hospital may be liable for a neonatal stroke if you can prove the stroke or the complications occurred because of:
- A delayed or missed diagnosis
- Preventable issues during labor and delivery
- Failure to adequately monitor the mother and baby
What is the statute of limitations for a neonatal stroke?
The statute of limitations for a neonatal stroke depends on where you live. A birth injury attorney from your state can help you understand the deadlines that apply in your case, as well as explain any tolling because the victim is a minor or statute of repose that may apply.
Neonatal Stroke Glossary Terms
- What is Arterial Ischemic Stroke? An arterial ischemic stroke is a type of neonatal stroke that occurs when there is a blockage in the blood flow within the baby’s brain.
- What is Moyamoya Disease? Moyamoya disease is a progressive medical condition that can cause arterial ischemic strokes because of the effect it has on the blood vessels in the brain.
- What is Hemorrhagic Stroke? A hemorrhagic stroke is a neonatal stroke caused by a brain bleed.
Talk to a Neonatal Stroke Birth Injury Lawyer in Your State
If your child suffered a neonatal stroke and complications, the Birth Injury Lawyers Group can connect you with a lawyer who works in your state can review your case for free today. Call 1-800-222-9529 to connect with a birth injury attorney near you.