Earlier this month a report that was published in Scientific Reports indicated that an early blood test is able to detect whether babies that were deprived of oxygen at birth were at risk of severe neurodisabilities, such as epilepsy and cerebral palsy. This is a significant medical breakthrough — even though only approximately 0.6% of babies in the U.S. obtain a birth injury. While services such as the issuing of birth control prescriptions and breast and cervical cancer screenings are currently being prioritized by Maine Family Planning, a concerted effort is also being made by health care providers to deliver quality pre-and post-natal care to mothers. Apart from ensuring a healthy overall pregnancy, quality pre-natal care can also decrease the risk of birth injuries considerably.
Prevention Is Better Than Cure
Healthcare practitioners are not the only ones who should be well-informed about birth injuries. Pregnant women should also familiarize themselves with the risk of birth injury, making sure to take the necessary steps that may minimize the risk of birth injury considerably. Seeking prenatal care early on during pregnancy is of vital importance. While pregnant women are naturally concerned about both their pregnancies and birth plans, Maine Health is taking all the necessary precautions to keep both mom and baby safe. It is also essential that patients notify their healthcare teams immediately if anything feels out of place, such as a sudden decrease in fetal movements.
Not All Injuries Can Be Prevented
Sometimes, despite the best efforts of both the mother and the medical team, however, birth injuries do occur. While some birth injuries, such as minor swelling and bruising, is not severe nor permanent, a severe birth injury can result in severe brain damage that can lead to cerebral palsy (CP) among other conditions. When a traumatic birth injury occurs, it is in the best interest of the mom to consult with a personal injury lawyer who has extensive experience in birth injury claims. If it is found that the baby’s injury was caused either by sub-standard care from a health care professional or due to the use of a defective product, compensation can possibly be recovered.
Multiple Treatment Options Exist
There are a number of treatment avenues that can be explored depending on the nature and extent of the birth injury. As each injury is very unique, a proper diagnosis is vital. In some instances, such as severe cases of brachial plexus injuries and skull fractures, surgery may be required. If a birth injury results in cognitive decline, pain, or seizures, medication may be described as part of a treatment plan. Additionally, physical therapy can be of great benefit to children who have CP, shoulder dystocia, and a reduction of voluntary muscle control. Over the last few years, hyperbaric oxygen therapy has also been used with increased frequency to assist in the treatment of symptoms associated with brain damage.
Moms-to-be in Maine should take every precaution possible to ensure the well-being of their babies. Apart from ensuring a healthy pregnancy, expert care can also reduce the risk of birth injury significantly.
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