One of the most dreaded things that a mother can face is to give birth to a child with an injury. Mothers go to prenatal check-ups because they want to make sure that the child they’re carrying is born in the best health. However, some circumstances are beyond a mother’s control, and some accidents happen that can result in a birth injury.
What You Should Know About Birth Injuries
If you are an expectant mother, here are some of the things that you should know about birth injuries:
Signs of Birth Injury Post-Delivery
Some injuries can be noted soon after childbirth. Signs include:
- Pale or blue skin color of the newborn
- Slow breathing, reduced heart rate, or need for cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR)
- Lethargic baby
- Non-responding newborn
- Difficulty in feeding
- Noticeable physical deformities in the baby
- Odd movements of the baby’s arms, legs, or face
In some cases, a birth injury would only be noted after a few years. Mothers can observe that the child has missed developmental milestones. Sometimes, teachers would see that the child would have learning disabilities or behavioral issues.
Common Types of Birth Injuries
Some of the most common types of birth injuries include:
Brachial Plexus Palsy
This birth injury involves the brachial nerve that controls the movement of arms and hands. It results from a vaginal delivery where the newborn has shoulder dystocia, or the baby’s shoulder gets stuck in the mother’s pelvic bone.
This injury appears as a swelling on the baby’s scalp and is a result of using a vacuum to extract the baby from the mother’s womb. Often, this type of injury would resolve even without intervention.
Cephalohematomas are bleeding underneath the newborn’s cranial bone. Some of them resolve without issues after a few months. However, more serious ones often result in complications such as jaundice. For such cases, they could be an indication of an underlying birth injury.
Some birth injuries can cause physical bruising or lacerations. One of the more common reasons for this is when the healthcare provider would use birth-assisting tools like forceps or vacuum extractors to force the baby out of the mother’s birth canal.
Complications of Birth Injuries
Some birth injuries are temporary, but some can cause permanent damage to newborn babies that they have to live with for the rest of their lives. Some of these birth injuries that can have long-term effects include:
This injury develops when babies have depleted levels of oxygen during the delivery. It can occur when the baby took too long to descend from the mother’s womb.
Another complication that may result from depleted oxygen levels is cerebral palsy. It can also be caused by infection and birth trauma. In some cases, cerebral palsy can also be due to the advanced age of the mother.
This type of injury is commonly seen in premature babies since they are more susceptible to suffer damage to the brain’s white matter surrounding the ventricles. They are widely due to oxygen deprivation, but they can also be caused by maternal infection or brain bleeds during childbirth. Periventricular leukomalacia can cause epilepsy, visual and auditory deficits, and intellectual disabilities.
Traumatic Birth Injuries
Traumatic birth injuries can result from forceful pressure and torsion on the baby. In some cases, these injuries can occur when medical professionals do not adhere to the expected standard of care, such as close monitoring of the mother and child during the pregnancy. According to Tinker law firm, incidents like these are pretty common. That’s why mothers should always make sure that their medical providers provide them with the best level of care to ensure that their newborn child would not suffer from birth injuries.
@lorelyn @brynel_maries Edited