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Neonatal Hypoglycaemia Claims

If your child has experienced injury because of neonatal hypoglycaemia that was caused or made worse by the negligence of a medical professional, the specialist solicitors at JMW can help you make a claim for compensation.

Our expert medical negligence team is considered one of the best in the UK due to the high number of complex cases we have won for our clients. We can give you the best possible chance of securing the outcome you deserve. While taking action of this kind may seem daunting, we understand everything you are going through and are here to support you every step of the way.

Find out more about how JMW can assist with your neonatal hypoglycaemia clinical negligence compensation claim by contacting us at 0345 872 6666. You can also use our online enquiry form to request a call back at your convenience. We are able to take on cases on a no win, no fee basis.

How JMW Can Help

If you believe you are eligible to make a neonatal hypoglycaemia compensation claim, we can offer free initial advice and act on a no win, no fee basis or with Legal Aid. We are very experienced in pursuing claims against the NHS and private healthcare providers on behalf of individuals who have suffered because of medical negligence and neonatal hypoglycaemia specifically.

The expert medical negligence team at JMW is renowned throughout the legal industry and is headed by leading solicitor Eddie Jones. Members of the team are on the Law Society's specialist panel for clinical negligence solicitors and the Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA) solicitor panel.

Due to our high success rate and compassionate and trustworthy approach, our team has been recognised by the Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners as one of the top law firms in the UK. 

We will also work to obtain interim payments to fund the costs of any immediate care your child may require. Neonatal hypoglycaemia can have catastrophic consequences, such as serious brain injury, if not treated appropriately. However we have the experience and skill to ensure your child has lifelong specialist care and financial security. 

What is neonatal hypoglycaemia?

Neonatal hypoglycaemia is a condition that affects newborn babies, typically within the first few days of life, and is characterised by an abnormally low level of glucose (sugar) in the baby's blood. Glucose is a crucial source of energy for the body's cells, which means that maintaining appropriate blood glucose levels is essential for the baby's health and development.

In the womb, the baby receives a constant supply of glucose from the mother. After birth, the baby must start regulating its own glucose levels. Most healthy babies can adjust to this change without any problems. However, certain babies are at risk of developing dangerously low blood sugar levels.

If hypoglycaemia is not detected and treated promptly in newborns, it can lead to serious complications, including brain damage. This is because the brain relies heavily on glucose for energy, and a shortage of glucose can impair the brain's function.

Thankfully cases of brain damage due to neonatal hypoglycaemia are relatively rare in England and Wales; however, when it does happen, it is vital that families are supported by a legal team with experience of these complex cases. This will help to ensure the right level of compensation is awarded if there have been failures in care.

What are the symptoms of neonatal hypoglycaemia?

The clinical signs and symptoms of neonatal hypoglycaemia can be quite difficult to recognise as they are often subtle and vary from one infant to another. However, this condition should be considered if a baby has some or all of the following symptoms:

  • Jitteriness and trembling
  • Lethargy
  • Difficulty feeding properly, showing little interest in feeding or having trouble latching on or sucking
  • Irritability and fussiness
  • A weak or high-pitched cry
  • Floppiness or poor muscle tone
  • Bluish or pale skin colour
  • Difficulty breathing or apnoea
  • Eye rolling or unusual eye movements

If you notice any of these symptoms in your baby, it is vital to seek medical attention immediately. Neonatal hypoglycaemia is a serious condition that requires prompt treatment to prevent long-term complications.

When can I make a neonatal hypoglycaemia negligence claim?

Medical negligence in the newborn period can contribute to dangerous hypoglycaemia in several ways. Healthcare professionals have a duty of care towards their patients, including newborn babies. This means they are expected to provide a certain standard of care, and if they fail to do so, it can result in harm to the patient, including conditions like neonatal hypoglycaemia.

Here are some ways in which medical negligence can contribute to neonatal hypoglycaemia:

  1. Failure to identify and monitor at-risk babies - certain babies are at a higher risk of developing neonatal hypoglycaemia, such as those who are premature, small for their gestational age, or born to mothers with diabetes. Healthcare professionals should be aware of these risk factors and closely monitor these babies. Failure to do so can result in a delay in diagnosis, exposing the child to the risks associated with untreated neonatal hypoglycaemia.
  2. Failure to conduct regular blood sugar checks - Regular blood sugar checks are crucial for detecting hypoglycaemia in newborns. If healthcare professionals fail to check a newborn baby's blood sugar - or fail to act on the blood glucose test results - it can lead to a delay in treatment.
  3. Failure to provide appropriate treatment - if a baby is diagnosed with hypoglycaemia, they need to receive treatment promptly to restore and maintain blood glucose levels. If healthcare professionals fail to provide this treatment, or if there is a delay in providing it, it can result in harm to the baby.
  4. Failure to educate parents - healthcare professionals should provide parents with information about the signs and symptoms of neonatal hypoglycaemia, especially if their baby is at risk. If parents are not properly informed, they may not seek medical attention when it is needed.

If you believe that your baby's hypoglycaemia was caused by medical negligence, you are advised to seek legal advice. A solicitor who specialises in medical negligence can help you to understand your rights and guide you through the process of making a claim.

What is the process for making neonatal hypoglycaemia claims?

If you believe you may have a case for making a neonatal hypoglycaemia claim, get in touch with the expert solicitors at JMW today. The claims process works as follows:

  • We will assess your situation and outline the best next steps to take.
  • We will gather evidence to support your case, and submit your claim to the hospital or other healthcare provider we believe is responsible. 
  • As long as the evidence we gather from independent medical experts is supportive of your claim, we will negotiate with the healthcare provider so that your child receives a fair compensation settlement. The vast majority of cases settle at this stage, either with or without a formal admission of negligence by the other side.
  • In the rare event that the outcome has to be decided by a judge in court, we will manage the whole process for you and ensure that your case is made in the strongest way possible. Your child’s compensation claim can help with the costs associated with any subsequent treatment and care, and ensure that the individuals responsible are held accountable for their errors.

By seeking help from us, you can be assured that we will minimise the stress of the legal process and allow you to focus on other aspects of your life, and we will keep you updated on the status of the case.

FAQs About Neonatal Hypoglycaemia

What are the risk factors for neonatal hypoglycaemia?

Certain factors can increase a newborn baby's risk of developing neonatal hypoglycaemia. These include:

  • Premature birth - babies born before 37 weeks of gestation are at a higher risk of neonatal hypoglycaemia. This is because their bodies may not be fully developed, and may not be able to regulate blood sugar levels as effectively as full-term babies
  • Low birth weight - babies who are smaller than average for their gestational age, or who have a low birth weight, are at an increased risk of hypoglycaemia
  • Maternal diabetes - babies born to mothers with diabetes (either gestational diabetes or pre-existing diabetes) are at a higher risk. These babies may have been exposed to high levels of glucose in the womb, causing their bodies to produce excess insulin, which can lead to low blood sugar levels after birth
  • Stress at birth - babies who experience stress or complications during birth, such as birth asphyxia or hypothermia, are at an increased risk
  • Genetic disorders - certain rare genetic disorders can affect a baby's metabolism and their ability to produce or regulate glucose, leading to neonatal hypoglycaemia
  • Abnormal feeding behaviour - babies who are not feeding well may not take in enough glucose, leading to low blood sugar levels

It is important to note that while these factors can increase a baby's risk of neonatal hypoglycaemia, they do not guarantee that the condition will occur. Nevertheless, these abnormal clinical signs should be monitored closely by medical professionals to ensure that any instances of neonatal hypoglycaemia are promptly detected and treated.

How should neonatal hypoglycaemia be treated and prevented?

Preventing neonatal hypoglycaemia involves identifying and closely monitoring babies who are at risk, using regular feedings and blood sugar checks to help ensure that any drops in blood sugar levels are detected and treated promptly.

If neonatal hypoglycaemia is detected, treatments will be primarily aimed at restoring the baby's blood glucose levels to a normal range. This will usually require hospital treatment, involving providing glucose-rich nutrition via a feeding line.

Maintaining a regular feeding pattern, ideally within the first hour after birth and then every two to three hours thereafter, can help maintain stable blood sugar levels. This is particularly important for babies who are at risk of hypoglycaemia, such as those who are small for their gestational age or those born to mothers with diabetes.

Regular blood glucose monitoring is crucial for babies at risk of hypoglycaemia. This typically involves taking a small sample of blood from the baby's heel and testing it to measure the glucose level. If they are still showing a low blood glucose result after feeding - or if the baby is not able to feed effectively - they may need to receive intravenous glucose, providing a direct source of glucose to quickly raise the baby's blood sugar levels.

It is important to note that while neonatal hypoglycaemia can be serious, with prompt detection and appropriate treatment, most babies can recover fully and go on to have a normal, healthy development.

Can I make a claim if my baby develops brain damage due to hypoglycaemia?

If your newborn baby has developed brain damage because of neonatal hypoglycaemia and you believe this was due to medical negligence, you may be able to make a claim for compensation. This could include situations where medical professionals failed to adequately monitor your baby's blood sugar levels and identify that your baby was at risk of hypoglycaemia, failed to assess any potentially abnormal neurological signs, or failed to provide appropriate treatment in a timely manner.

A neonatal brain injury caused by hypoglycaemia can have serious, lifelong consequences. It can lead to developmental delays, learning disabilities and physical disabilities. Compensation can help cover the costs of your child's ongoing care, including medical treatment, therapy, special education and any necessary adaptations to your home.

If this applies to your circumstances, get in touch with JMW Solicitors today, and we will advise you on the next steps.

Talk to Us

To speak to a member of the team today to find out more about what you can expect from making a neonatal hypoglycaemia clinical negligence claim with us, get in touch by either calling for free on 0345 872 6666, or by completing our online enquiry form.

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