The Birth Injury Lawyers Group have helped many families affected by HIE. Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy is a form of brain damage suffered by infants when the oxygen supply is inadequate due to both preventable and unpreventable circumstances.
We have earned our reputation from experience and aggressive, compassionate representation in birth injury cases. Our hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy attorneys in South Carolina have the expertise to assess the details of your case and take legal action if your child has suffered due to medical negligence.
If you believe your child’s occurrence
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Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy Facts
Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE) can also be referred to as birth asphyxia or perinatal asphyxia. This is the medical terminology for a lack of oxygen to the baby that results in brain damage.
Our body and brain require ample oxygen to prevent cell death and to survive. HIE causes cellular death in the brain and can result in physical and mental impairments and disabilities that can have minor impact or lifelong consequences. Some impairments that are a result of HIE can include:
- Intellectual disabilities
- Physical disabilities
- Learning disabilities
- Seizure disorders
- Cerebral palsy
The length of time that elapsed during the baby’s oxygen deprivation has a great effect on the severity of the damage. When medical professionals fail to act and respond in an appropriate manner, irreparable damage can be done.
Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy lawyers in South Carolina are familiar with the situations that can lead to HIE occurrences and can investigate whether the medical staff could be responsible.
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How Prevalent is HIE?
Roughly two to nine live births out of every 1,000 involve an instance of hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy. There is very little known about the number of newborns that die globally of HIE, but it is estimated to be between 10 to 60%.
Around 25% of children with hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy occurrences will experience severe impairments. The disabilities can require lifelong care and medical attention, and it is not the life a parent envisions for any of their children.
When a medical provider fails to act in an appropriate manner to recognize and combat HIE, the consequences can be devastating. An HIE lawyer in South Carolina understands the challenges that are faced by these families, and can work to seek ample compensation for their losses.
How is HIE Caused?
There are a multitude of things that can cause HIE. Medical errors, improper training, failure to diagnose and treat infections, overuse of induction medication, and more can create the situations that lead to instances of HIE. Some of these include:
- Breech or cephalopelvic disproportion complications
- Complications related to the baby’s size or position
- Difficulty feeding or swallowing
- Fetal monitoring failures and errors
- Medication errors (eg: pitocin, cytotec)
- Placenta previa, placental abruption, and placental insufficiency
- Preeclampsia, high blood pressure issues
- Premature birth
- Profound metabolic or mixed acidemia, low blood ph in umbilical cord sample
- Prolonged labor, delayed c-section
- Resuscitation of the child at birth
- Seizures in the first two days of birth
- Tachysystole (excessively frequent uterine contractions)
- Trauma or brain hemmorhage to baby during delivery
- Untreated high blood pressure
- Wrapped cord, nuchal cord, prolapsed cord, compressed cord or other umbilical cord issues
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Is There Treatment for HIE?
The traditional methods of dealing with hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy included seizure management, NICU care, blood pressure and glucose maintenance, supportive care from specialists and limiting further injury.
Hypothermia or brain cooling therapies are now the accepted mainstream treatment to improve the outcome of HIE babies and have proven effective in the reduction of the severity of brain damage.
The baby’s temperature is lowered for several days allowing the metabolic rate to slow. This provides a better environment for cell recovery and circumvents further brain damage. If the physician has not recognized the HIE and acted by providing appropriate treatment, it can be considered negligence.
What Damages are Available in an HIE Malpractice Case?
Compensation for your current and future medical expenses are a major concern when thinking of filing a malpractice case. The suffering of your child and the effort you will need to commit are also concerns of many parents. The circumstances of each case vary, but you should not have to be financially responsible if someone’s negligence caused your baby’s injury.
Typically, damages are awarded by a jury or the case will reach a settlement with an insurance company. The financial recovery comes from the damages of costs incurred due to the injury.
The damages commonly considered in malpractice case involving HIE could include:
- Counseling and therapy costs
- Loss of a family relationship or loss of consortium
- Lost wages or income due to missing work and caring for the child
- Medical treatment costs – past and ongoing
- Mobility equipment and devices such as braces, walkers, or wheelchairs
- Pain and suffering – emotional damages
- Physical therapy and rehabilitation
- Required Surgeries to address the injuries and resulting conditions
- Special education costs as the infant grows to school age
These costs can be extremely expensive and quite prohibitive for most families. It’s important to pursue compensation if you believe the injuries your child sustained could be due to medical error, contact an HIE attorney in South Carolina to learn more about the legal options.
Contact an HIE Attorney in South Carolina Today
If you suspect your child experienced HIE, or believe that a diagnosed case of HIE was the result of medical mistakes, call our South Carolina hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy attorneys.
The Birth Injury Lawyers Group will review your case free of charge.
We are passionate about serving the families of birth injury victims and can provide you with answers to your legal questions and advise you of your options. Our experience with medical malpractice cases also includes the later symptoms of HIE, including cerebral palsy. Please contact us today.
of HIE may have been preventable, you deserve to know what happened. If you are seeing symptoms of a previously undetected case of HIE, you have the right to seek answers. Our HIE attorneys may be able to help.