Neonatal hypoglycemia is a condition where an infant’s glucose (also known as blood sugar) falls to unsafe levels. In the early days after birth, a newborn requires a lot of energy for proper development. Most of this energy comes from glucose and is used by the brain.
Our Scottsdale attorney at the Law Offices of Robert H. Kleinschmidt, P.C., knows that low blood sugar levels can have far-reaching consequences for a newborn. If not treated properly, neonatal hypoglycemia can cause developmental problems and irreversible brain damage.
Before birth, an infant’s glucose needs are met by the mother through the placenta. When he is born, his glycogen storage levels may drop considerably, as his body adapts to life outside the uterus.
Risk Factors For Developing Neonatal Hypoglycemia
Below are factors that increase the chances of an infant having hypoglycemia:
- Premature birth
- A mother who has gestational diabetes
- Certain genetic disorders or metabolic defects
- Low birth weight/small for gestational development
- Low oxygen levels during or after delivery
Three in every 1,000 births are diagnosed with neonatal hypoglycemia. For infants with the above factors, the risk for the condition may go up to 30%.
Symptoms Of Infants With Low Blood Sugar
Neonatal hypoglycemia can be asymptomatic. However, if any of the following are observed, there may be cause for concern:
- Bluish skin tone
- Respiration problems
- Irritability and crying
- Difficulty feeding
- Trembling; low body temperature
If the above symptoms are observed, the infant’s glucose levels should be checked. The test can be administered through a blood test (heel stick) or through a urine sample.
The baby should be constantly monitored in the nursery or care unit if he is diagnosed with hypoglycemia. Hospital protocol may require increased feedings and/or supplementation with formula.
In extreme situations, the child may receive intravenous solutions of glucose. This treatment should continue until the child’s glucose levels have stabilized.
Neonatal Hypoglycemia: Developmental And Growth Deficits
Unchecked or poorly treated neonatal hypoglycemia has been shown to cause developmental and growth deficits. These problems will mostly likely extend throughout the child’s life resulting in hardship for both the affected child and his family.
Contact Our Arizona Lawyer For Birth Injury Representation
If you worry that your child had low glucose levels at birth and was not treated properly, you may be entitled to compensation. Please consult with The Law Offices of Robert H. Kleinschmidt, P.C., at 480-951-3949, or contact us online. We are paid on a contingency basis, meaning that you only pay us for legal fees if we are successful in obtaining an award or settlement for you. We provide legal representation to people throughout the greater Phoenix area.