Morgan Gaynor | February 18, 2021 | Medical Malpractice
Being the parent of a newborn is stressful. Whether it is your first child or your tenth, there are so many things to keep in mind about the health and wellbeing of your little one. Sleepless nights, feeding issues, birth injuries and defects, and more are all concerns that can make parenting an infant challenging.
One such worry is cephalohematoma. Cephalohematoma is a condition where blood pools between your child’s skull and surrounding skin. It is often caused by trauma to the head during the birthing process.
Not every case of Cephalohematoma is severe. In many cases, symptoms will go away on their own. However, there are a number of things you need to know and keep in mind when it comes to the health of your newborn and this traumatic birth injury.
Causes of Cephalohematoma
As noted above, there are natural causes of cephalohematoma. When a baby makes the journey from the uterus through the birth canal, it can be quite traumatic. If the baby’s head is large or the mother’s pelvis too small, the odds of cephalohematoma are increased.
However, there are other causes of cephalohematoma that you should be aware of. For example, if your doctor used a birth-assisting device to move the baby out of the birth canal, there is a greater chance that your baby could develop cephalohematoma. That is because the pressure of a vacuum or forceps used could cause injuries to the baby’s head.
It is when a birth-assisting device is used that you should pay attention to your baby’s condition and how severe their case of cephalohematoma is. Also, if the medical staff seems to downplay the severity of the case or deny fault, you should take note that they could be preparing a defensive posture in case legal action is taken against them in the form of a medical negligence claim.
Symptoms of Cephalohematoma
The tell-tale sign of cephalohematoma is bulging on the head, especially around the back. Broken blood vessels between the skull and skin bleed out and pool in one area. As they congeal, the lump or bump will begin to harden.
While many cases will resolve themselves on their own, cephalohematoma can lead to other serious complications, such as:
- Jaundice (highlighted by a yellowish hue of the skin)
- Low red blood cell count
If you suspect that your baby is suffering from a severe case of cephalohematoma, see a doctor immediately. Depending on how serious the case, the doctor may try draining some of the blood from the affected area, phototherapy to help with jaundice, or even order a blood transfusion.
To rule out other complications and brain injuries, the doctor might order additional tests, such as an x-ray, CT scan, or an ultrasound.
What to Do if Your Newborn Has Cephalohematoma
The health of your baby is your number one priority. If you think your baby is suffering from cephalohematoma, seek medical attention immediately. If the case is severe and you feel like it was caused by the negligence of the doctor, midwife, or nurses who delivered and initially cared for your baby, you might also want to consider contacting a qualified personal injury lawyer who specializes in birth injuries.
A good lawyer will be able to assess your case and determine whether or a lawsuit is in order. By investigating the circumstances surrounding your baby’s case of cephalohematoma, your lawyer will position you and or your family to receive the compensation you are due.
While doctors often do their best to mitigate harm, every medical professional makes a mistake at one time or another. If that mistake could have been avoided and caused harm to you or your baby, there is legal action you can take to help cover the damages you have incurred.