What Is Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE)?

When there are serious problems during the pregnancy, labor, or delivery process, it can lead to long-term conditions with which the baby must live. One of these serious conditions — which occurs in about 20 of every 1,000 births that go full term — is hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy, or HIE. When a baby is premature, the possibility of he or she developing HIE is much higher, around 60%. This condition is caused by a lack of oxygen and blood to the baby’s brain. Here are some of the causes of HIE and what you should know.

Causes of Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy

It’s important to understand the different causes of HIE so you understand what options you may have to hold the negligent party accountable. Some of the most common causes include lung malformations, preeclampsia, abnormal fetal positions, umbilical cord strangulation, placenta rupture, fetal anemia, and more. Other causes can include infections post-partum, brain trauma, or cardiac disease.

Treatment Options

If your notice that your baby has a low heart rate, pale skin color, difficulty breathing, meconium staining, or any similar symptoms, you want to act quickly to have your doctor run tests and determine the best possible treatment option.

The doctor must consider potential damage to the baby’s brain and body, and the treatment must be provided as soon as possible. The doctor may use a ventilation machine to help the baby breathe properly. Medication and other oxygen treatment may be used. In some situations, HIE can cause an increased body temperature, in which case, the doctor may need to cool the body and brain of the baby.

Our team at Hampton & King understands the various problems that can occur due to HIE and we know that these conditions are often caused by negligent medical professionals. Our Houston birth injury lawyers are here to help individuals get the results they need, obtaining justice against the responsible party. We’re here for you when you need us most.

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Categories: Birth Injuries