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Can a Cephalohematoma Birth Injury Cause Cerebral Palsy?

by The Beasley Firm  |  July 25, 2011  |  

Our experienced birth injury attorneys in Philadelphia know what can cause infant cerebral palsy (CP). Usually, it is not the cephalohematoma, but the difficult labor that caused the cephalohematoma and cerebral palsy.

A cephalohematoma is a collection of blood underneath the scalp of a newborn baby. It is the same type of blood collection an adult would get if there was any trauma to their head or scalp. In other words, it is a big bruise on the scalp.

In a newborn, the trauma to the head or scalp is usually caused by a birth injury, large fetal or baby head, a small pelvis in the mother, a forcep delivery or a vacuum used during delivery. Even though a cephalohematoma may look dangerous, they are usually not. Just like any other bump or bruise, the body will eventually absorb the blood and the injury will heal. In babies, during that time, they may become jaundiced due to the breakdown of the old blood, but it is usually harmless unless the bilirubin rises to a point of causing kernicterus in a newborn.

But, why is it that some babies born with cephalohematoma’s develop cerebral palsy if cephalohematomas are not worrisome? It is because of what happened during labor and delivery to cause the cephalohematoma that is the worrisome part. Cephalohematomas are caused by trauma to the infant’s head during labor. It could be that the baby’s head got “stuck” during labor in the mother’s pelvic bones. It could be because the baby was too big to be delivered vaginally. It could be because the baby was showing signs of distress or a low heart rate on the baby monitor or fetal monitor strips and the doctor had to use forceps or a vacuum to quickly deliver the baby to avoid an anoxic brain injury or to minimize injury to a newborn’s brain. It is what happened before the cephalohematoma that could have caused the cerebral palsy.

If your baby was born with a cephalohematoma and now has cerebral palsy, both you and your baby may be able to be compensated for the pain and suffering, medical expenses and lifelong treatments if the cerebral palsy was caused by medical negligence. Here at the Beasley birth injury law firm, our experienced teams of birth injury lawyers, doctors and nurses who have actually worked in labor and delivery units and with newborns, are who you want to turn to for answers. We know that cephalohematomas may not lead to cerebral palsy, but we know what can.

Please feel free to call us to speak to one of our experienced birth injury lawyers, neonatal nurses or doctors. We are here to talk with you with no obligation. We know you are going through enough physically, emotionally and financially already. Your call to our experienced cerebral palsy lawyers in Philadelphia is absolutely free. The work-up of your case is at no cost to you. We only get paid if there is a successful settlement or verdict on your behalf. In other words, we will fight for you, your baby, and your family without asking for a penny out of your pocket while we are fighting for you. You want answers as to why your child has cerebral palsy; we may be able to give you the answers that no one else can.

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