Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy

National HIE Attorneys

Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy Claims in Maryland and Beyond

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Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) is one of the most catastrophic types of birth injuries, requiring extensive medical care well-beyond birth. If your child’s HIE was caused by medical negligence, you shouldn’t have to bear the financial and emotional weight of the diagnosis alone. Let an experienced HIE lawyer at Law Firm of Michael H. Bereston fight for the justice your child and your family deserves.

Schedule a free consultation with our firm by calling (410) 220-6581. We are based in Annapolis, MD but represent cases across the country on a pro hac vice basis.

What is Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy?

Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy occurs when a newborn's brain doesn't receive enough oxygen and blood, leading to potential brain damage.

  • Hypoxic - Inadequate oxygen levels in the tissues and cells of the body.
  • Ischemic - Deficient supply of blood such as to the heart or brain.
  • Encephalopathy - Relating to diseases or conditions of the brain.

If you believe that your child's HIE was a result of medical negligence or malpractice, you may have grounds for a legal claim.

What Causes Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy?

Several factors can contribute to the development of HIE during your pregnancy, labor and delivery.

  • Maternal health issues: Certain maternal health conditions can increase the risk of HIE. These may include placental insufficiency, preeclampsia, maternal infections, anemia, and cardiovascular problems. During prenatal care, your healthcare provider will monitor you for conditions that may affect the flow of oxygen from you, through the placenta, to your baby.
  • During labor and delivery, you and your baby will be monitored for any signs that the oxygen supply to the baby may be compromised. Fetal monitoring allows the healthcare providers to monitor the health of the baby during the added stress of contractions and delivery. Healthcare providers are trained to interpret the fetal monitor tracings which, if interpreted correctly, can provide information to allow for timely interventions to prevent an extended period of oxygen deprivation to the baby.
  • Premature birth: Premature babies are more susceptible to HIE due to their underdeveloped organs. The brain specifically is more vulnerable to oxygen deprivation and ischemic injury.

It's important to note that HIE is a complex condition and multiple factors can contribute to its development. In many cases, it is a combination of various factors rather than a single cause.

When is HIE the Result of Medical Error?

Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy can be caused by the negligence or error of a healthcare provider. Some examples of HIE negligence include:

  • Your doctor did not properly address labor complications that caused the baby to suffer low blood flow or oxygen deprivation.
  • Your doctor failed to notice or address fetal distress before brain damage occurred.
  • Your doctor did not provide proper prenatal care, causing the birth mother to suffer an infection or other condition that may lead to HIE.
  • Your doctor did not take proper precautions when handling a high-risk pregnancy, such as premature birth.
  • Your doctor or nurse administered too much Pitocin or another type of labor-inducing drug, causing severe contractions that deprived the baby of oxygen/blood.

If you suspect that the attending doctor, nurse, or another medical professional at your birth made an error that caused your baby to suffer HIE, contact The Law Firm of Michael H. Bereston, Inc. as soon as possible. Our experienced birth injury lawyers have recovered millions of dollars in compensation for clients in Maryland, DC, and nationwide*.

Schedule a free consultation with our national HIE attorneys today. You will not pay anything unless we win your case.

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