5 Signs your Cerebral Palsy Baby Suffered from Preventable Birth Asphyxia

This post was written by Andrea Girones:

December 10, 2015    Cerebral Palsy is a complex medical condition involving physical and brain dysfunctions. One well accepted cause of CP is birth asphyxia at the time of delivery of the baby. In many cases, birth asphyxia is preventable by prudent and careful doctors and nurses.

Doctors have many ways to ascertain the health of the fetus in utero. Fetal heart rate monitoring is the most common and most effective way to monitor the health of the baby.

When someone drops the ball, and your baby suffers a permanent, debilitating injury, that  is medical malpractice.

A baby that has been otherwise healthy during the pregnancy and who is delivered in severe distress, may have suffered from birth asphyxia (lack of oxygen).  Some of the clues lie in the following:

  1. the pH level of the cord blood from the umbilical cord is a measure of how well oxygenated the baby is; a pH below 7.0 indicate asphyxia;
  2. the Apgar scores can tell you whether or not a baby was in distress;
  3. seizures as a baby are an important sign of birth asphyxia;
  4. swelling of the brain is also a sign of brain injury;
  5. later on in life, these children have physical and other developmental difficulties

Labour and delivery is a very stressful time on a baby and it is normal for the heart rate to fluctuate during contractions. A healthy baby will have a  heart rate that quickly recovers from any stressful periods of time whereas a baby who is struggling in utero, for whatever reason, will show signs of stress in the fetal heart rate.

The main focus during labour and delivery is to monitor the health and well-being of the baby. Cutbacks in healthcare budgets, old equipment and reduced staffing of nurses and doctors can mean that sometimes the medical practitioners are stretched too thinly.

It may be the hospitals have  inexperienced nurses monitoring a heart rate, or perhaps a nurse who relies too much on technology and not on her own ears and instincts. A doctor may be racing from room to room and performing  c-sections and not able to properly instruct the medical staff.

If you feel that some of your child’s disabilities may have been caused by trauma at birth, please call or email our office for a free consultation agirones@gironeslaw.com and toll free at 1-866-701-5811.  We investigate all such cases for free, anywhere in Canada.


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