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What Are Common Causes of Birth Asphyxia?

Anyone who has ever given birth or watched the process unfold knows that newborn babies are delicate. One small mistake during the delivery process can have tragic consequences.


Your delivery doctor will know to monitor your infant's access to oxygen. During birth, oxygen deprivation can cause severe cognitive and physical disabilities, or death.


Birth asphyxia, or the failure to establish breathing at birth, causes an estimated 900,000 infant deaths worldwide every year, according to the World Health Organization. The United States is no exception: Data collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that birth asphyxia was one of the top-10 causes of infant death in 2004.


If your infant was injured due to a negligent doctor or nurse, contact the Bowling Law Firm. David A. Bowling is a medical malpractice lawyer in Louisiana who will help you hold the liable parties accountable.


Mr. Bowling will assess doctors' records, arrange an independent medical examination and expert testimonies, and help you fight for the maximum payout. Call 877-757-3539 today to schedule a consultation.


Causes and Symptoms of Birth Asphyxia


There are several factors that can lead to birth asphyxia, but many cases are preventable if doctors and nurses provide diligent care. Common causes of birth asphyxia include:


      An infection in the mother or baby;

      A very long or difficult delivery;

      The baby's airway is blocked, typically by the umbilical cord; or

      The mother has very high or low blood pressure.


You may have grounds for a medical malpractice claim if your doctor failed to monitor acid levels or the infant's reflexes, heartbeat and respiration. If health-care workers do not notice the signs of birth asphyxia or they fail to respond quickly - usually by performing an emergency C-section - then the infant may suffer injuries to his or her heart, lungs, kidneys, brain and other organs. Babies who survive birth asphyxia are at a higher risk of developing cerebral palsy, a neurological disorder that permanently affects movement and muscle coordination.


Common symptoms of birth asphyxia include:


1.     The infant is not breathing or is breathing very weakly;

2.     The infant has a very low heart rate;

3.     The infant shows signs of poor muscle tone or weak reflexes;

4.     The infant is very pale or has a bluish tinge in his or her skin;

5.     The infant has too much acid in his or her blood - a condition known as acidosis; or

6.     The infant has seizures.


If your newborn child suffered birth asphyxia due to a negligent health-care worker, contact the Bowling Law Firm. As your medical malpractice attorney in New Orleans, David A. Bowling will answer your questions and help you navigate the claims process.


Mr. Bowling has more than 30 years of trial experience, and his law firm is AV-rated under Martindale-Hubbell's peer review rating system. Call 877-757-3539 today to schedule a consultation.


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