Neonatal sepsis is a leading cause of infant disability and death. It is a blood infection that occurs in infants younger than 90 days old. A number of different bacteria including Escherichia coli (E. coli), Listeria, and certain strains of streptococcus can cause this. There are two types of neonatal sepsis: early on-set and late-onset.
Early on-set sepsis occurs in the first week of life and is usually present within 24 hours after birth. This is because the baby contracted the infection from the mother before or during delivery. The following increase an infant’s risk:
- Group B streptococcus infection during pregnancy
- Preterm delivery
- Water breaking that lasts longer than 24 hours before birth
- Infection of the placenta tissues and ammonic fluid
Late on-set sepsis occurs between 8 and 89 days after birth.
The following scenarios increase an infant’s risk of sepsis after delivery:
- Having a catheter in a blood vessel for a long period of time
- Staying in the hospital for an extended period of time
When treated promptly, most babies with these bacterial infections recover completely with no remaining problems. Failure to provide prompt treatment can lead to severe complications, including permanent disability or death.
If your child has suffered as a result of neonatal sepsis, you may have a case. Although medical negligence can be difficult to prove, the birth injury attorneys at Pope & Howard, P.C. have the knowledge and experience necessary to fight for the compensation you and your child deserve.