The birth of a child is supposed to be one of the happiest times in your life, but it can quickly become stressful when something goes wrong. If your doctor failed to diagnose or treat infant jaundice, you may be entitled to compensation for your harm. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, our hard-working Syracuse medical malpractice attorneys have the determination, skill and experience to handle your case. We will analyze the circumstances surrounding your child’s injury to determine if there is enough evidence to file a lawsuit.
Jaundice, also referred to as hyperbilirubinemia, is characterized by a yellowish discoloration of the eyes and skin of a newborn infant. This happens because the baby’s blood contains excessive amounts of bilirubin, a pigment that is released when red blood cells are broken down. Under normal circumstances, the liver removes bilirubin from the body, but in some newborn children, the liver is not mature enough to do this properly. When jaundice is not identified and goes untreated, a condition called kernicterus can develop. Kernicterus is a type of brain damage caused by very high levels of bilirubin in the blood.
Six out of every ten children are born with some degree of jaundice that is diagnosed as a relatively minor condition. Most infants recover from jaundice on their own with non-invasive treatments; however, if jaundice is severe or goes untreated then newborns may experience severe health problems such as hearing loss, vision problems, intellectual disabilities and even cerebral palsy.