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Chicago HIE Attorney

Parents and pregnant mothers should never have to worry that a healthcare provider’s error will result in a debilitating birth injury to a newborn baby. Yet medical errors result in birth injuries much too often, and parents and the new baby alike can experience immense suffering as a result. While some types of birth injuries can heal with time and medical care, others can cause life-long and permanent disabilities for the baby. In some cases, birth injuries ultimately can result in the child’s death. One common type of birth injury is hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE), which can result in severe and permanent disabilities.

An experienced Chicago HIE attorney at our firm can provide you with more information about this type of birth injury and can help you to seek the financial compensation you deserve.

What is Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy?

According to the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals, HIE is “a type of brain dysfunction that occurs when the brain doesn’t receive enough oxygen or blood flow for a period of time.” The word “hypoxic” refers to a lack of oxygen, while the word “ischemic” refers to a lack of blood flow, and the term “encephalopathy” refers to a brain disorder. As UCSF Benioff explains, HIE is a condition that can “develop during pregnancy, labor and delivery, or in the postnatal period,” and there are a variety of different causes.

What Are the Causes of Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy in Chicago?

Causes of HIE can include but are not limited to the following:

  • Issue with blood flow to the mother’s placenta;
  • Preeclampsia;
  • Congenital fetal infection;
  • Umbilical cord problem;
  • Uterine rupture;
  • Abruption of placenta;
  • Breech position;
  • Prolonged late-stage labor; and/or
  • Low blood pressure in the mother.

Common Signs of Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy in Chicago

Signs and symptoms of HIE can vary widely. According to UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals, “some children will experience no health issues—or only mild or moderate effects—from HIE, while others may have more severe and permanent disability” as a result of the brain being deprived of blood and oxygen and, as a result, the rest of the body experiencing oxygen deprivation. The severity of HIE will usually depend upon the amount of time that the brain was “starved” of blood or oxygen.

Signs and symptoms may include but are not limited to:

  • Baby is unreactive to sights or sounds;
  • Baby is extremely tense and overreacts to stimulation;
  • Baby is “floppy”;
  • Baby experiences seizures or has abnormal movements;
  • Baby has difficulty with feeding due to weakness in the mouth or throat muscles; or
  • Baby’s cry is weak.

Consequences of HIE may include but are not limited to:

  • Developmental delays;
  • Cerebral palsy;
  • Epilepsy;
  • Cognitive impairment; or
  • Organ damage, such as damage to the heart, liver, kidneys, and bowels.

Contact a Chicago HIE Attorney Today for Help

If your baby was born with HIE, it is important to speak with one of our Chicago HIE attorneys to find out more about filing a birth injury claim. Do not hesitate to get in touch with us to learn more about Illinois birth injury lawsuits. Contact Wais, Vogelstein, Forman, Koch & Norman, LLC for more information.

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