The best way to find out what causes an infant skull bulge is to have a trusted physician perform an examination. There are a variety of circumstances that can lead to an infant’s skull appearing to bulge, including serious injuries and conditions. In many instances, the injuries and conditions that have skull bulge as a symptom, occur during birth and are preventable.
For example, it is possible for an injury that causes the skull bulge to occur during an assisted vaginal delivery. Doctors perform assisted vaginal deliveries using a vacuum device or forceps in about 3% of all births in the United States, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG).
For a free legal consultation, call 1-800-222-9529
Conditions and Injuries That May Appear as Infant Skull Bulge
The conditions and birth injuries that can cause a bulge on your newborn’s head can range from relatively harmless conditions to serious injuries. This could include cephalohematoma, subgaleal bleed, caput succedaneum, craniosynostosis, bulging fontanelle, and skull fracture.
Cephalohematoma is one of the most common reasons for bruising and bulges on a baby’s head. This appearance is caused by blood pooling between the infant’s scalp and their skull. Since the blood is located outside of the skull, it poses no risk of brain injury.
A subgaleal bleed also occurs between the scalp and the skull. However, this type of bleeding can involve a large amount of blood and requires medical attention as soon as possible to ensure the baby maintains a safe blood volume in that area.
Caput succedaneum is a swelling of the baby’s head that may cause a bulge or “conehead” appearance. It occurs because of prolonged delivery or vacuum extraction in most cases and generally goes away on its own.
Craniosynostosis can cause ridge-like bulges or a misshapen head. This is a congenital condition that causes the parts of a baby’s skull to join together before they are supposed to do so. Treatment may require surgery. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about one out of every 2,500 babies born in the United States has craniosynostosis.
The causes of bulging on a baby’s soft spots, or fontanelles, may be serious. This could include brain swelling or excess fluid buildup around the brain. If your baby’s soft spots do not feel firm or seem to bulge out, you should discuss your concerns with a trusted doctor as soon as possible.
Another potentially serious injury that can cause a skull bulge is a skull fracture. When your baby suffers a skull fracture just before, during, or after birth, they may also sustain a traumatic brain injury. If your child suffered a skull fracture, you and the doctor should monitor them closely for brain injury symptoms.
Birth Injury Lawyer Near Me 1-800-222-9529
Treating the Underlying Cause of Your Infant’s Skull Bulge
What causes an infant skull bulge plays a major role in determining the treatment and any ongoing monitoring. Most cases are relatively minor and will likely clear up with minimal treatment over the first few days, weeks, or months of the child’s life. In some cases, though, prompt treatment is key to getting the best possible outcome.
Doctors may need to monitor the baby over a period to ensure they do not have any lasting effects or a debilitating brain injury. This may require monitoring to ensure they hit developmental milestones and gain proper motor skills on time. Vision and hearing tests may be necessary, as well.
Infant Skull Bulge and Birth Injury Compensation
In some cases, a skull bulge on an infant may be an indication of a preventable birth injury. You may be able to hold the doctor or hospital responsible if your child suffered injuries because the medical team:
- Failed to identify risk factors for injury before delivery.
- Failed to react properly to an increased risk of injury.
- Used inappropriate technique or force when delivering your baby.
Complete a Free Case Evaluation form now
Speak to a Member of Our Infant Brain Injury Medical Malpractice Team
At the Birth Injury Lawyers Group, we help families whose child is living with a brain injury or other birth injury because of medical negligence. We may be able to discuss your baby’s injuries with you and offer help today.
If you have questions about your child’s injuries and the possibility of legal action, a member of the Birth Injury Lawyers Group can evaluate your case for free. You may be able to learn more about your options, the requirements for expert witnesses, and the expected timeline to take action in your state.
Call (800) 222-9529 now to get started.