Infant Brain Damage Treatment Options
Infant brain damage, which is distinct from congenital brain or birth defects, occurs all too often. Its severity differs from case to case and the treatment plan that best suits your child’s needs should be tailored to his or her unique situation. While treatment options differ dramatically from infant to infant depending on the extent and location of brain damage, there are common treatments and therapies that may help your child live his or her best life. Understanding the treatments that may benefit your infant is essential when working with a care team to develop the best approach for a child with brain damage.
Treatments & Therapies for Infant Brain Damage
Before determining the best course of treatment in your child’s case, doctors generally need to run one or more imaging tests. A physical exam and various other tests may assist healthcare providers in diagnosing the area of the brain where the damage occurred, how severe the injury is, and the potential complications caused by it. After that, physicians may recommend one or more of the following treatments and therapies to improve outcomes and support better quality of life in brain damage sufferers.
If your infant has suffered a traumatic brain injury, often defined as an alteration in brain function caused by an external force, your doctor may decide that your child requires surgical treatment. For example, if an infant suffers a skull fracture or bleeding inside the skull, your doctor may intervene with surgery. These types of injuries can be caused by improper use of delivery instruments or during protracted labor. Surgical intervention can reduce pressure on the brain, eliminate blood clots, treat broken blood vessels, and drain fluids that may be collecting as a result of hemorrhage or other conditions.
Infant brain injury can result in medical conditions like seizures and difficulty eliminating waste. Depending on the recommendation of your doctor and your pharmacist, your infant’s seizures may be treatable by drugs like benzodiazepines or other anti-seizure medications. Difficulty eliminating waste can be treated through diuretic medications, again depending on your medical care provider’s recommendation. A number of other medications, including mood-stabilizing drugs, are available to assist with cognitive and emotional difficulties that may result from infant brain injury. Medication can also treat certain causes of infant brain injury, including jaundice, infections, and blood disorders.
Intubation and Oxygen Treatment
Infant brain damage is often caused by a lack of oxygen. Placing an infant on a ventilator can restore oxygen flow and ease strain on the infant’s lungs and hearts, particularly if they have suffered from a lack of oxygen during labor and delivery. Ventilators can also provide an excess of oxygen to your infant’s blood, assisting with healing and recovery following a complicated or long delivery process.
Certain studies, including some cited by the National Institutes of Health, have shown that a doctor cooling a baby’s brain in a controlled environment can help reduce or reverse infant brain damage. This is sometimes called hypothermia treatment. This treatment method can reduce an infant’s body temperature below the normal 98.6 degrees for a certain period of time, often 72 hours, to reduce complications from brain damage. As with all courses of treatment, its important to consult with your doctor regarding whether hypothermia treatment might provide benefits to your child. Some studies have shown that this type of treatment has benefits that continue through early childhood.
If infant brain injury results in impaired motor function, poor balance, and/or other physical disabilities, physical therapy can help treat, reduce, or eliminate those symptoms. Physical therapy can increase flexibility, coordination, and strength. Occupational therapy can help children increase their level of comfort in performing daily activities, like using the toilet, getting dressed, and grooming. In combination, physical and occupational therapy can dramatically improve a child’s quality of life.
Obtain Compensation for Newborn Brain Damage Treatment in NJ
If you are carrying the heavy costs associated with your child’s medical care after he or she suffered brain infant during birth, you are not alone. When a doctor, hospital, or another healthcare provides errs while delivering your child or at any time before or after their birth, these parties may be held liable. Find out if you may be eligible for compensation from a negligent medical professional or facility by contacting an NJ birth injury lawyer with experience handling newborn brain damage claims. Call (866)-708-8617 or fill out a form to receive a free consultation.