Florida Brain Cooling Injury Lawyer
Was Your Baby Injured by Cooling Procedures? Contact Freidin Brown, P.A.
Having a baby is a joyous and awe-inspiring moment for new parents. However, for some parents, that joy is abruptly met with anxiety and pain when their baby is taken to a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) for brain cooling therapy. Brain cooling, or “hypothermia therapy,” is an emergency medical procedure that may be performed on infants within 6 hours of being born and can last for up to 2 days as the infant is repeatedly cooled down. While this treatment can save lives in some cases, it also requires that the attending doctors pay attention to your infant’s needs – and when they don’t, the results are nothing short of tragic.
At Freidin Brown, P.A., our Florida birth injury lawyers have seen many cases where a doctor’s negligence necessitated brain cooling therapy. In other instances, a child who desperately needs this technique could also be denied proper treatment as a result of negligence. If you have any reason to suspect that your child’s brain injuries were caused or amplified by improper brain cooling, we’re here to assist.
Contact our medical malpractice team at 866-716-7292 for a FREE consultation in South Florida.
The Link Between Brain Cooling and Neonatal Asphyxia
Lack of oxygen during birth is the main reason that a healthcare professional may opt to perform brain cooling therapy on an infant. In particular, brain cooling therapy can assist when your child has sustained a serious brain injury called hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE), also called neonatal asphyxia. Because HIE is often caused by physician mistakes during birth, the very fact that a physician has recommended brain cooling may be a sign that negligence has occurred. HIE can lead to a range of serious long-term complications, most notably cerebral palsy.
Some of the most common birth injuries that can cause HIE include:
- Placental abruption
- Maternal hemorrhage
- Trauma during the delivery
- Uterine hyperstimulation, or tachysystole
- Shoulder dystocia
- Umbilical cord complications
- Delayed C-section
- Incorrect positioning of the fetus
What Are the Results of Improper Brain Cooling Therapy?
When administered correctly, hypothermia therapy is an innovative technique that can prevent infants from dying, as well as decrease the possibility that your child will suffer a long-term illness or disorder. It has been shown in multiple independent research studies to improve oxygen flow in infants. However, the key here is that it must be administered correctly: Unfortunately, this is not always the case.
Below are a few of the issues that can arise if brain cooling therapy is performed incorrectly:
- Sinus bradycardia, or lowered heart rate: Because hypothermia therapy applies intense cold to your baby’s brain and body, it may have the effect of lowering their heart rate to a dangerously low level. While usually not fatal on its own, sinus bradycardia can cause long-term issues for the respiratory and gastrointestinal system, including sleep apnea, asthma, and acid reflux.
- Cerebral palsy: Failing to cool your infant quickly enough after they develop HIE may cause cerebral palsy to set in. Cerebral palsy is a serious motor disorder that has no cure. Depending on the gravity of your child’s cerebral palsy, they may only suffer from mild spastic jerking movements and muscle stiffness, or they may be unable to move without the use of a wheelchair.
- Blindness or seizure disorders: Because HIE directly affects the cerebral cortex, one of the main outcomes of improper brain cooling technique is blindness. This disability can change the way your child functions and navigates through the world for decades to come, and can affect every aspect of your lives.
If your child has been injured by brain cooling therapy, or because a physician failed to treat HIE in time, they may be liable for damages. Contact Freidin Brown, P.A. todayfor a FREE consultation.