Birth Injuries and Medical Negligence – Anoxia and Hypoxia

birth injury cystic fibrosis attorneys

Two birth injuries, anoxia and hypoxia, are common risks associated with childbirth.

Birth injuries can be extremely serious and may have life altering consequences. They can lead to debilitating conditions such as cerebral palsy or paralysis or may result in the death of the infant. Anoxia and hypoxia are two conditions that can be extremely dangerous and potentially life threatening.

What Is Anoxia?

Anoxia is a term that describes the absence of sufficient oxygen in the blood, organs, or muscle groups. Cerebral anoxia refers to the condition when there is no supply of oxygen to the brain, resulting in permanent brain damage.

What is Hypoxia?

Hypoxia is a term that describes low levels of oxygen in the body. It commonly occurs in pre-term babies whose lungs are not developed completely and cannot breathe on their own.

Causes of Anoxia and Hypoxia

Anoxia and hypoxia are common risks associated with childbirth. A compressed, kinked, or prolapsed umbilical cord can cause the baby to stop breathing. If a doctor suspects a pinched or linked umbilical cord, he or she may order an immediate cesarean section.

Conditions Related to Anoxia or Hypoxia

If oxygen levels fall below a certain level, many parts of the body may be affected. Common conditions related to anoxia or hypoxia are:

  • brain injury
  • cerebral palsy
  • asthma
  • anemia
  • headache
  • emphysema
  • lung disease
  • heart disease
  • pneumonia
  • sleep apnea
  • shock

Anoxia and Hypoxia Leading to Brain Damage

Anoxia and hypoxia can lead to brain damage. When the brain does not receive sufficient amounts of oxygen for a certain period of time, the brain starts to operate in emergency mode and sends random signals that may sometimes cause seizures because of an overload of electric impulses. The level of damage depends on the length of the period for which the baby stops breathing. If a baby stops breathing for more than six minutes, the baby is generally considered brain dead.

If a baby stops breathing for up to 5 minutes, doctors will immediately take steps to restore normal breathing. They can provide treatment such as hyperbaric oxygen therapy; the baby is put in an oxygen chamber to repair any damage that may have occurred for the lack of oxygen. Timely intervention can prevent conditions such as cerebral palsy. There are many tests available to confirm a hypoxic or anoxic brain injury including electroencephalogram, MRI, and CT scan.

Birth Injuries and Medical Negligence

Once the child has been diagnosed with a birth injury related to anoxia or hypoxia, it is important that the child is given immediate medical help. If you believe that a doctor was negligent in handling your child’s anoxic or hypoxic injury, contact an experienced and competent Missouri birth injury lawyer to protect the legal rights of your child.

Call (314) 588-7200

Missouri Medical Malpractice Lawyer

If you have suffered as a result of medical malpractice, contact our legal team right away. Waiting to seek legal representation can prevent you from filing a claim and receiving the compensation you deserve.


Contact Zevan Davidson Roman today.

Schedule your free consultation