Birth Injury Blog

How Long Can a Baby Survive Without Oxygen At Birth?

Posted By Beam & Raymond || 14-Jul-2017

In a previous blog, we detailed the long-term effects of birth asphyxia, or oxygen deprivation that occurs during labor and delivery. The longer oxygen deprivation lasts, and the more severe it is, babies are exposed to increased risks of serious brain damage, life-altering conditions such as hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE), and even death. As such, it becomes critical that treating medical professionals adequately monitor mothers and babies to identify potential complications, and to respond appropriately and in a timely manner when they arise.

At Beam & Raymond, our nationally recognized Chicago birth injury lawyers have handled many birth injury cases on behalf of families across the country. Many of these cases involved oxygen deprivation that led to varying degrees of damage and injury. In the most serious cases, victims were left with life-altering conditions, or even died as a result of medical errors. This is because the potential for harm increases exponentially when oxygen deprivation is severe and when it persists for longer periods of time.

Survival for babies that experience oxygen deprivation will range, as outcomes vary depending on how severe it is, how long it persists, and how quickly medical professionals can intervene.

After 1 minute of oxygen deprivation, cells in the brain begin to die, but survival and recovery is possible, especially if appropriate treatment methods are taken.

After 3 minutes of oxygen deprivation, the brain is likely to experience serious damage.

10 minutes of brain damage results in the death of many brain cells, and poorer recovery prognoses.

After 15 minutes, brain damage is permanent and there is little possibility for recovery. Any time around this period without oxygen can also lead to death.

Any amount of time a baby experiences oxygen deprivation can cause harm, and resulting brain damage may vary depending on the unique facts involved. This includes whether or not medical professionals upheld their legal obligation to address complications in a timely and reasonable manner, such as performing emergency C-sections, head cooling, and other risk-reducing or life-saving procedures.

If your child suffered an injury at birth as a result of oxygen deprivation, or if death occurred, it is in your best interests to speak with an attorney about your legal rights and whether you may have a valid claim for compensation. As proven birth injury attorneys, our legal team can help you identify potential instances of medical malpractice, and guide you through your legal journey toward justice and fair compensation.

Contact Beam & Raymond to speak with a lawyer.

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