Today’s post will focus on how nurses help families of newborns with an HIE brain injury, but from the context of how the injury happened and if a birth injury assessment from a birth injury lawyer is warranted. As a mother who has recently given birth to a newborn who has an HIE brain injury, it is understandable to want to know how this happened, especially if the family wants more children in the future.


Please remember that what I am discussing today will not apply to all nurses communicating to families like this about these issues. But for the nurses who do attempt to help in this way, families should pay close attention to the communication, verbal and non-verbal, these nurses offer. At the end of the day nurses from different departments can provide valuable assistance in determining whether medical malpractice contributed to your baby’s condition.


How Nurses Help Families Of Newborns With An HIE Brain Injury


Below we will cover three departments that might be involved in the care of mom and baby. The first department is labor and delivery. Labor and delivery nurses play a critical role in the childbirth process. These nurses are responsible for monitoring things like the baby’s vital signs, mom’s pain management, and communication with other medical professionals. Labor and delivery nurses are often times the first to notice any signs of fetal distress during labor and delivery.


If medical malpractice occurred during labor and delivery, labor and delivery nurses may have observed any of thefollowing.

  • Prolonged labor without appropriate interventions
  • Fetal heart rate abnormalities indicating distress
  • Delayed response to signs of fetal distress
  • Inadequate communication between the health care team


In some cases the above observations (the list is not exhaustive) might be reduced to writing and make its way into the medical record, usually through the nurse’s notes. This type of documentation can be critical in giving insights as to what was happening during labor and delivery especially when records like the fetal heart readings corroborate the nurse’s findings.


The second types of nurses who might be involved in your baby’s care when an HIE brain injury has occurred are NICU nurses. NICU nurses provide around-the-clock care for critically ill newborns. These nurses become the main source of info regarding the current status of the newborn while they are in the NICU.


Another thing about NICU nurses is that they have access in many instances to the medical records which have accompanied the newborn to the NICU. What this means is that in some cases these nurses will have access to labor and delivery nurse’s notes (and sometimes Dr.’s notes if they are in the record).


Finally, postpartum nurses might be involved in the treatment when a newborn has suffered an HIE brain injury at birth. Generally, if the baby is in the NICU, a postpartum nurse might be assigned to mom to help her following birth. These nurses also monitor vital signs, educate and assist with breast feeding, and educate on newborn care.


As with NICU nurses, postpartum nurses can have assess to the medical records that will travel with mom and baby. These nurses can also add valuable insight into what may have happened during labor and delivery.


Putting The Puzzel Together…


What I have outlined above is how NICU and postpartum nurses can understand what may have occurred during labor and delivery and how this info can be shared with mothers. Not only can it be helpful to listen to the verbal communication of these nurses, but it is also important to pick up on non-verbal communication.


To break the above down even further, I will share with you what my experience as a birth injury lawyer has taught me. Sometimes nurses in other departments will either hint at, or strongly suggest to parents who are struggling to understand how this HIE brain injury happened, that this family should “have a legal professional” look into what happened to their baby. As one family told me, “The nurse told us that there are serious problems in the notes about your labor.” Again, not all nurses will reveal this type of info, but for the ones who do, listen very carefully and if you can, begin requesting both mom, baby, and electronic fetal heart monitor records. This is how nurses can help families of newborns with HIE brain injuries in the context of medical malpractice investigations.


If you have more questions as to how your baby suffered their HIE brain injury at birth, I invite you to contact me at my contact info below. It does not cost you any money to speak with me initially about your baby’s story, as this is what we do.


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 Maryland birth injury attorneys