Childbirth brings a number of emotions for families; from excitement, concern, worry, and joy, it is a roller coaster of an experience. For many newborns, the process goes smoothly and without problems, but as a birth injury attorney with 34 years of experience, I know not every family is so lucky.
While childbirth is miraculous and beautiful, it can also turn dangerous quickly. For new parents and experienced parents alike, I cannot stress how important it is to do research beforehand and understand the possible complications that may lie ahead.
Understanding the difference between a common occurrence and a life-threatening issue can make the difference in your newborn’s medical care.
Oftentimes, I tell parents to ask questions! A mother knows best, so it is imperative that a mother or father questions the doctor when they feel their baby’s health and well-being is at risk.
One specific medical concern that parents should recognize is the onset of newborn jaundice.
In simplest terms, newborn jaundice is the yellowing of an infant’s eyes and skin.
Jaundice is common in newborn babies and occurs when the infant has high levels of bilirubin—a yellow substance the body produces when it breaks down red blood cells. If jaundice is left untreated for too long, the bilirubin levels in the baby’s blood may become so high that causes a severe brain injury!
Look for the following symptoms in your child and notify the doctor immediately:
- Yellowing of the skin, whites of eyes, inside the mouth, on soles of feet or palms of hands
- Dark yellow urine
- Pale colored feces
- Poor with feeding
- Have a high-pitched cry
A newborn should typically be examined for jaundice within 72 hours following their birth but can be more difficult to detect in premature infants.
Although newborn jaundice is typically not life-threatening, delaying treatment for it can have severe consequences on your child. If your baby has suffered permanent brain injury due to this, you need to call me immediately.
Author: Tim Misny | For more than 34 years, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in birth injury, medical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving “Cleveland, Akron/Canton, Columbus, Dayton and neighboring communities.” You can reach Tim by email at misnylaw.com/ask-tim-a-question/ or call at 1 (800) 556-4769.