What area of the brain does HIE affect in a baby? The answer to this question can depend in some instances on the severity of the injury. As for the question, this is a follow up of an educational article that I recently wrote regarding how an HIE injury can impact a baby.


That article went into depth as to some of the physical manifestations of an HIE injury and pointed to why understanding the area(s) of the brain injured can work to help families understand some of the possible challenges an HIE injured baby might face as they get older.


What Area Of The Brain Does HIE Affect In A Baby?


HIE, or hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy is a type of traumatic brain injury in which there is a reduction in oxygenated blood which can lead a baby to suffer a brain injury. One of the most common causes of a reduction in blood and oxygen for a baby during labor and delivery is compression of the umbilical cord.


In general, the affected areas of the brain during an HIE injury are the basal ganglia, the watershed areas, and the cerebral cortex, to name a few. Depending on the severity of the injury, the brain stem may also be involved in an HIE injury.


As I mentioned above, when parents can understand the area(s) of the brain which are injured from an HIE injury, they might have a better understanding as to the future challenges for their child. For example, if the basal ganglia is injured, this injury might manifest itself with the baby having movement challenges, speech challenges, and posture challenges. The reason for this is because the basal ganglia is responsible for these physical manifestations in the body.


This is a good time to remind families that there is no guarantee in the above example that every child will have difficulties with all of the physical manifestations mentioned. Sure, some children might have all the listed ones, but some children may have some, and not all. Traumatic brain injuries are not one size fits all because each baby who suffers this injury is different.


From a medical legal standpoint, it is important for families to know that if there are no genetic causes, or developmental causes of a baby’s HIE injury, it is worth at least speaking with a birth injury attorney to explore whether negligence, or birth trauma, is the cause of the injury. Going back to my statement above, umbilical cord compression can be the culprit of oxygen deprivation in some cases and this event can be seen sometimes in the readings on the electronic fetal heart monitor, in real time. For a birth injury attorney, one of the questions will be what actions, if any, were taken if there is clear evidence of a baby no longer tolerating a vaginal delivery. If there was a departure from the standard of care, causing your baby’s HIE injury, then it is only right for those who caused the injury to be held responsible.


To speak with me further regarding your baby’s HIE injury you can reach me at my contact information below. It costs nothing to initial speak with me about your baby’s story and I would be happy to chat with you about things.


Marcus B. Boston, Esq.

Boston Law Group, LLC

9701 Apollo Dr. Suite 100

Largo, Maryland 20774



1-833-4 BABY HELP


Marcus Boston is a Maryland medical malpractice attorney who helps people navigate the Maryland childbirth injury and medical malpractice process to get money for their injuries caused by the carelessness of doctors and hospitals. BLG handles cases in Prince George’s County, Baltimore City, Montgomery County, Howard County, Anne Arundel County, and all other Maryland Counties. blgesq.com