How To Claim For Harm Caused By Being Starved Of Oxygen At Birth

In this guide, we will look at the circumstances in which you can claim compensation because your baby has been starved of oxygen at birth. In order to claim, the incident would need to have happened because of medical negligence. We will take a closer look at what this means later in this guide. 

starved of oxygen at birth

Starved of oxygen at birth claims guide

We will also answer questions such as, “what disability is caused by a lack of oxygen at birth?” and “can a lack of oxygen at birth cause developmental delays?”. Furthermore, we will look at how much compensation could be awarded in these circumstances. 

If you have any questions about claiming for medical negligence or clinical negligence, please refer to our team of professional and experienced advisors. They offer free legal advice and can be contacted 24/7. Furthermore, they can also put you through to our panel of No Win No Fee solicitors who can help you seek compensation if your baby has been starved of oxygen because of substandard medical care. 

Contact us at a time that suits you using the details below:

  • Call us on 0800 408 7825
  • Contact us through our website. 
  • Please write to us using the Live Chat window. 

Please read on to learn more about how you can claim for your child being starved of oxygen at birth. 

Select A Section

  1. What Could Cause A Baby To Be Starved Of Oxygen At Birth?
  2. Symptoms Of Being Starved Of Oxygen At Birth
  3. What Causes Birth Asphyxia?
  4. Treating A Lack Of Oxygen At Birth
  5. How To Prove Negligent Medical Care
  6. Starved Of Oxygen At Birth Compensation Calculator
  7. Contact Us About No Win No Fee Starved Of Oxygen At Birth Claims
  8. Helpful Links

What Could Cause A Baby To Be Starved Of Oxygen At Birth?

Hypoxic-ischemia is when your baby is starved of oxygen or blood flow during the birthing process. This can be called birth asphyxia and can develop into hypoxic-ischaemic encephalopathy (HIE). We will explain the symptoms and potential causes of this further down the article. 

While these injuries can be very distressing and difficult to deal with, it’s important to understand that you can only claim compensation if the injuries were caused by a breach of duty of care. Whether they work for the NHS or a private healthcare organisation, all medical professionals have a duty of care towards their patients. 

This duty of care means that they need to treat every patient to the best of their ability. In order to claim, you need to show that the level of care fell below the minimum required standard of care expected from their profession. 

If you’re claiming because your baby has been starved of oxygen at birth, peers of the medical professional may review what took place as part of the claims process. This is called the Bolam Test. If they decide that the medical professional’s actions were below the required standard of care, you could receive compensation. 

To learn more about this or if you have any other questions or queries about the claims process, please get in touch with our team of advisors for free legal advice. They can tell you if you’re eligible to claim and even provide you with a compensation estimate. Contact them at a time that suits you using the details above. 

What is the impact of a lack of oxygen at birth?

You may want to claim if your baby is suffering from hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy because of the potential long-term or permanent issues that can be caused by it. Problems with the placenta during the birthing process can lead to many different types of issues due to the complex nature of the brain. 

Examples of conditions that have been connected with being starved of oxygen at birth include:

  • Cerebral Palsy
  • ADD
  • ADHD
  • Autism
  • Behavioural disorders
  • Seizures
  • Epilepsy
  • Blindness
  • Impaired vision

This isn’t an exhaustive list of potential complications. If your child suffers from other conditions due to a birthing injury that was caused by medical negligence, you may be able to claim. 

Symptoms Of Being Starved Of Oxygen At Birth

Your child being starved of oxygen at birth can lead to hypoxic-ischaemic encephalopathy. However, this can vary in severity and is categorised into three separate groups. They are: 

  • Grade 1 (mild HIE) – The baby could demonstrate hyper-awareness, have difficulty sleeping or feeding and be irritable in particular cases. This can be difficult to diagnose. 
  • Grade 2 (moderate HIE) – Signs of brain damage are more pronounced in this category and can include lack of energy or movement, reduced muscle tone and clinical seizures. 
  • Grade 3 (severe HIE) – In the most severe cases of HIE, characteristics can include low heartbeat, an inability to breathe independently and minimal response to stimulation, and the other symptoms already mentioned.

If you would like free legal advice about claiming for harm caused to your baby by medical negligence, get in touch. One of our friendly and helpful advisors could connect you with a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel.

What Causes Birth Asphyxia?

It’s important to remember that both you and your baby could be affected by medical negligence. You and your baby’s wellbeings are intrinsically linked during the birthing process. Therefore, it isn’t just the baby’s condition you can claim compensation for, but any negative impacts you’ve also experienced due to medical negligence.

For example, if your baby is injured in childbirth because of negligence, this could result in a traumatic birth. This could leave you with psychological injuries as well as physical injuries that affect your child. 

Your baby could be starved of oxygen at birth for various reasons. For instance, preeclampsia and eclampsia can lead to you suffering from high blood pressure. 

If you’re suffering from either of these conditions, they should be identified at a check-up appointment. If they aren’t monitored correctly by medical staff, it could cause birthing complications that ultimately could have been avoided if the right level of care had been administered.  

How could birth asphyxia occur?

Other potential causes of birth asphyxia include:

  • Trauma in utero trauma you’ve experienced while carrying the baby can threaten your child’s blood supply. 
  • Problems with the placenta – the placenta could separate too early from the uterus, resulting in the baby being starved of oxygen. 
  • Umbilical cord problems – the umbilical cord could prolapse during or before birth. 
  • Shoulder dystocia – this is caused by the baby’s shoulders becoming stuck during the birthing process.  

These conditions could be caused by the negligence of a healthcare provider. Alternatively, they may have been missed because of medical negligence, causing them to progress more than they would have if the right care had been delivered. If this is the case, you may be able to claim.

You can also claim for any injuries caused to either you or your baby during the birthing process as the result of negligence. For example, misuse of medical equipment or being mishandled during the process could result in you suffering a serious injury, such as a fractured hip or a minor brain injury

Treating A Lack Of Oxygen At Birth

There are many ways babies who are starved of oxygen at birth can be treated. The treatment is ultimately decided on aspects such as the extent of the injury and how quickly it’s diagnosed. 

Examples of treatments include:

  • Inducing hypothermia to cool the baby. This can help prevent further brain damage. 
  • Dialysis. This can help support the kidneys by removing excess waste. 
  • Putting the baby on a respirator. This can take pressure away from the baby’s lungs. 

To know more about claiming because your baby was starved of oxygen at birth, don’t hesitate to contact our team for free legal advice 24/7. They can answer any questions or queries you have and can tell you in just one phone call if you’re eligible to claim for harm caused by medical negligence. 

How To Prove Negligent Medical Care

You may be claiming because your baby suffers from behavioural disorders, cerebral palsy or clinical seizures due to a lack of oxygen caused by medical negligence. Every case shares a common feature: you need evidence to prove this.

Evidence you could use in support of your claim includes:

  • Medical evidence, such as scans and notes. 
  • Witness details so that a statement can be taken at a later point.
  • A list of your and your baby’s treatments. 
  • Photographic evidence of the injury if possible. 

For more information on the evidence you could provide in support of your claim, speak to one of our friendly and helpful advisors today. You could be connected with a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel to work on your claim.

Starved Of Oxygen At Birth Compensation Calculator

With every clinical negligence or medical negligence case, you could receive two potential heads of claim as part of your compensation. General damages relate to the pain and suffering, both physical and psychological damage, caused by the incident. 

Special damages relate to the financial losses you’ve suffered because of the incident. For instance, this can include loss of earnings if you’re unable to work, travel expenses and adjustments required for your home. 

The Judicial College is a publication containing guideline compensation brackets for a wide range of injuries. They analyse previous payouts, based on the injury and its severity, to build compensation brackets which you can see below. 

Injury TypeSeverityCompensation AmountDescription
ShoulderSevere£18,020 to £45,070This injury is often associated with neck injuries and involves damage to the brachial plexus causing significant disability.
ShoulderSerious£11,980 to £18,020This bracket is for shoulder dislocation which causes damage to the lower brachial plexus leading to pain in the neck and shoulder.
BrainModerately Severe£205,580 to £264,650This bracket is for a seriously disabling brain injury. There will be need for constant professional help. Physical disabilities could include limb paralysis. Cognitive issues could include intellect and personality impairments.
BrainModerate (i)£140,870 to £205,580Cases in this bracket cause moderate to severe intellectual deficit, personality issues with potential effects to speech, sight and senses.
BrainModerate (ii)£85,150 to £140,870Cases in this bracket lead to moderate to modest intellectual deficit, with the ability to work being greatly reduced with some risk of developing epilepsy.
BrainModerate (iii)£40,410 to £85,150Cases in this bracket cause concentration and memory issues, with a reduction in the ability to work and where there is a small risk of epilepsy.
Psychiatric Damage GenerallyModerate£5,500 to £17,900This bracket is for psychiatric damage that leads to problems with the person's ability to cope with life and work and can negatively impact relationships with friends and family. However, the prognosis will be good because there will be a marked improvement by trial.
Psychiatric Damage GenerallyLess Severe£1,440 to £5,500The compensation amount awarded for this type of injury will depend on factors like the length of time the disability has affected the person and the extent to which daily activities and sleep are impacted.
Post-Traumatic Stress DisorderModerately Severe£21,730 to £56,180This bracket is for PTSD where there is a better prognosis than in more severe cases because some recovery has been made through professional help.
Post-Traumatic Stress DisorderModerate£7,680 to £21,730In this bracket, the person will have largely recovered. As such, any continuing effects will not be ones that are grossly disabling.

However, please remember that this only indicates what could be received. For a more accurate assessment of your claim, get in touch with one of our advisors today. 

Contact Us About No Win No Fee Starved Of Oxygen At Birth Claims

If you want to claim because your baby has been starved of oxygen at birth, you may be unsure what the benefits of using our panel of No Win No Fee solicitors are. They’ll agree to you using their services on a Conditional Fee Agreement basis. The benefits include:

  • Not having to pay your solicitor’s legal fees either upfront or during the claim.  
  • Not being asked to pay your solicitor in the event that your claim is unsuccessful. 
  • The solicitor’s legal fees come out of your compensation, meaning that you don’t have to worry about paying them. This will be a small, legally capped portion of your overall award. 

Our advisors are available 24/7 and offer free legal advice, so if you have any questions or queries about the claims process, please get in touch. You are under no obligation to use our services if you contact us.

However, if you do want to, they can put you through to a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel whose specialised expertise could result in you receiving compensation. Contact us at a time that works for you using the details below: 

  • Call us on 0800 408 7825
  • Contact us through our website. 
  • Please write to us using the Live Chat window. 

Helpful Links

Please use the links below for further information and guidance. 

More HIE information for parents can be found in this NHS guide. 

You can also complain to the NHS separately before or during a claim. To learn more about this, please visit their website. 

Please read this for more guidance about babies being born with serious health conditions

Would you like more information about how long a medical negligence case can take? If so, please refer to our website. 

Want to know more about how No Win No Fee claims work? If so, view this. 

Check out more of our guides below:

If you’d still like more information about claiming compensation after your baby has been starved of oxygen at birth, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at a time that works for you using the details above. 

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