Jaundice is a yellow tint in a newborn's skin and the white part of their eyes. It is a sign of too much bilirubin in the baby's blood. Most babies have mild jaundice, which usually goes away on its own within a week or two. Although rare, if the bilirubin levels stay high and aren’t treated, brain damage may occur. This can lead to serious, lifelong problems. Jaundice might also be caused by other things, such as an infection, a problem with the infant’s digestive system, or when the mother’s blood cells attack the newborn’s blood cells.
How Can It Be Prevented?
Jaundice occurs in 50-70% of all newborns. But, there are ways to prevent it from becoming serious and reaching a level that requires additional treatment. Making sure your baby gets enough to eat is one way to reduce the risk of jaundice. Doing so can help your baby’s body remove excess bilirubin.
Some ways to reduce the risk of jaundice are:
- Begin breastfeeding as soon as possible after birth. Studies have shown this has a higher success rate when initiated in the first few hours after birth.
- In the first days and weeks of life, don’t try to put the baby on a schedule until the breastfeeding relationship has been established.
- Avoid supplementing or interrupting breastfeeding if at all possible.
- Ask a doctor if you feel your baby isn’t feeding enough.
Consequences of a Doctor’s or Nurse’s Negligence
Your doctor and their team should be able to treat jaundice quickly and effectively. When they don’t, you may have a legal basis for financial compensation. However, if your doctor doesn’t diagnose or properly treat jaundice, your child could be at risk of:
- Cerebral Palsy
- Hearing Impairment or Deafness
- Brain Damage
You didn’t ask for this to happen to your child, and you shouldn’t have to bear the costs that come with it. Consulting with an experienced birth trauma attorney can help you get the compensation you’re seeking. Our lawyers can determine if you have a case and assist you in all steps of your lawsuit.
Contact us now to learn how our Indiana birth injury attorneys can help with your case.