Your newborn might suffer from several different types of brain hemorrhages as the result of a serious birth injury. Although some symptoms may be similar, each type of brain hemorrhage will have their own symptoms. Some types of bleeding in the brain and their corresponding symptoms include:
- Subarachnoid HemorrhageWhen your child suffers from a subarachnoid hemorrhage or bleeding below the two membranes that cover their brain, you might detect the symptoms of a brain hemorrhage in your newborn that include seizures and lethargy.
- Subdural Hemorrhage If your infant suffers from a subdural hemorrhage, or bleeding between the outer and the inner layers of the covering of their brain, you may notice the onset of seizures.
- Epidural Hematoma A newborn with an epidural hematoma, or bleeding between the outer layer of brain tissue and their skull, you or your doctor might detect symptoms that include apnea and seizures.
If you detect the symptoms of a brain hemorrhage in your newborn, ask to see a doctor immediately for a complete examination and diagnosis.
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A Birth Injury May Lead to a Brain Hemorrhage
Having an infant who is the victim of a birth injury means some type of damage happened to your baby during labor, delivery, and birth. Many birth injuries are the result of the physical pressure your baby experiences during the process of their birth. A birth injury is often caused by the pressure of navigating the birth canal or because of your child becoming stuck in the birth canal.
Birth injuries can also occur because of an abnormal birth presentation or because of the use of forceps or other surgical instruments your doctor might use to bring your baby down into the birth canal. Birth injuries that might occur and lead to brain hemorrhages include swelling and bruising of your baby’s scalp, scratches from birthing tools and instruments, or a fracture of one of the bones in their skull that occurs before or during birth.
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Diagnosing a Brain Hemorrhage in My Newborn
When your doctor starts to detect the symptoms of a brain hemorrhage in your newborn, he may recommend imaging tests that will provide a detailed view of your child’s brain as part of a comprehensive diagnosis. Your doctor or another medical specialist may suggest one or more of the following imaging exams.
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) uses a magnetic field and radio waves to create detailed images of your baby’s brain. The machine used to produce MRI images can also produce 3D images that provide a view of your baby’s brain from different angles. It is a useful tool for diagnosing brain injuries caused by trauma.
- A computerized tomography scan (CT scan) uses a series of X-ray images to create cross-sectional images that provide significantly greater detail than standard X-ray images. A CT scan can help your doctor visualize your baby’s brain injury by using a special dye to create contrast. This dye helps highlight your baby’s brain and emphasizes the brain’s blood vessels.
These tests are usually noninvasive and painless but will require your infant to be very still from start to finish of the exam. A doctor will explain the entire procedure to you.
Treatments My Newborn Will Receive for a Brain Hemorrhage
When doctors detect the symptoms of a brain hemorrhage in your newborn, they will move your son or daughter to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) of the hospital. In the NICU, your child will be able to receive close, careful monitoring and supportive care that includes maintaining warmth and receiving fluids via an IV.
Supportive care might also include other measures to help your baby maintain critical body functions while a diagnosis is made, and a treatment plan is established. Your infant will be stabilized, their individual symptoms will be treated, and they will be watched closely to ensure blood or fluid buildup does not cause additional pressure on their brain. In severe cases of a brain hemorrhage, a shunt might be required to drain fluid from your baby’s brain. Additionally, severe bleeding in the brain might lead to developmental delays and difficulty maintaining muscle control.
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Filing a Birth Injury Lawsuit for Your Child’s Brain Hemorrhage
If your newborn suffers from an infant brain hemorrhage, you are entitled to answers about the cause of their medical condition. When a physician begins to detect the symptoms of a brain hemorrhage in newborns, they may perform a physical examination and imaging exams to reach a diagnosis and create a customized treatment plan.
Find out what financial compensation you might be entitled to by speaking to a lawyer in your state who can help. If your baby has been diagnosed with a brain hemorrhage as the result of a birth injury, call the Birth Injury Lawyers Group at (800) 222-9529 for a free consultation with an attorney near you.