Lack of oxygen at birth .. its causes, complications and methods of treatment.

_ What is lack of oxygen at birth?

Lack of oxygen at birth is a condition that occurs when the child cannot get enough oxygen during the birth process, this condition can cause the death of the child, or it may have serious long-term complications, and this may also result in what is called ischemic encephalopathy.

Or neonatal hypoxic encephalopathy.

What are the symptoms of lack of oxygen at birth?

Babies may not have symptoms of hypoxia at birth right away.

A very high or low fetal heart rate could be an indication.

_Your baby may experience immediate symptoms after birth.

It can include:

▪️The skin is pale or blue.

▪️Difficulty breathing, which may cause symptoms such as nasal congestion or abdominal breathing.

▪️Slow heart rate.

▪️Muscle weaknessThe length of time your child spends without oxygen affects the severity of the symptoms.

The longer the child remains without oxygen, the more likely he or she will experience symptoms.

More severe symptoms of an injury or failure can include:


▪️ heart.



Causes of lack of oxygen at birth.

Anything that affects your child’s ability to take in oxygen can cause of lack of oxygen.

During labor and delivery, doctors must carefully monitor the oxygen levels and try to control them for both the mother and the baby to reduce the risks.

Lack of oxygen at birth can occur if one or more of the following occur:

1. Your child’s airway is blocked.

2. Your baby suffers from anemia, which means his blood cells do not carry enough oxygen.

3. Dystocia.

4. The mother does not get enough oxygen before or during childbirth.

5. The mother’s blood pressure is high or low during childbirth.

6. The infection affects the mother or the child.

7. The placenta detaches from the uterus very quickly, resulting in oxygen loss.

8. The umbilical cord wraps incorrectly around the baby.

There are two ways in which babies who lose oxygen before, during, and after birth can suffer from neonatal asphyxia.

▪️Lack of oxygen can cause immediate damage. This can happen in a matter of minutes.

▪️Damage can also occur when cells recover from lack of oxygen and release toxins into the body.

Who is most at risk of lack of oxygen during childbirth?

1. Premature babies are at an increased risk of developing this condition.

2. Babies born to mothers with conditions that affect pregnancy, such as diabetes or preeclampsia, are also at a higher risk.

3. The mother’s age or low birth weight is also a risk factor.

How is hypoxia diagnosed during childbirth?

Your baby will have an Apgar score about 1 to 5 minutes after birth.The scoring system consists of five factors:

1. breathing.

2. The pulse.

3. Appearance.

4. Stimulus response.

5. Muscle strength.

How is hypoxia during childbirth treated?

▪️The severity of your child’s symptoms will affect treatment.

▪️The timing of your child receiving a diagnosis will also affect treatment.

For example, mothers may receive additional oxygen before birth to boost the baby’s oxygenation before birth.

A caesarean section is a potential preventive measure in long or difficult deliveries.

Postpartum treatment.

1. Babies with this condition may need ventilation to support their breathing.

2. Keeping children warm has also been shown to reduce harmful effects.

3. Doctors will also monitor the baby’s blood pressure and fluid intake to make sure he is getting enough oxygen.

Some children may have seizures due to lack of oxygen. Doctors must treat these children carefully to avoid having seizures.

_ Long-term complications.

The outlook depends on how long your baby will spend without oxygen. Surviving children can experience anything from no consequences to severe, long-lasting disabilities.

1. Lack of oxygen is a major cause of brain damage, cerebral palsy, and death in infants worldwide.

According to the World Health Organization, an estimated 900,000 children die annually worldwide from lack of oxygen during childbirth, and the majority of these deaths occur in developing countries.

2. Autism.

3. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

4. Seizures.

5. Behavioral problems.

6. Poor growth.

7. Nutritional deficiency.

Early diagnosis and prompt treatment of the condition is vital to saving the child and reducing complications.

Complications related to hypoxia.

If the child is receiving insufficient oxygen, the possible outcomes include:

1. Fetal distress.

This condition occurs when the baby experiences continuous periods of fluctuating heart rates due to complications that arise during pregnancy, labor or delivery. Fetal distress is usually caused by a lack of oxygen, which can be caused by a number of factors.

2. Cerebral Palsy.

It is a condition that arises as a result of fetal hypoxia that occurs during labor and / or childbirth.

Specifically, cerebral palsy affects a child’s body movement, muscle control, muscle coordination, muscle tone, reflexes, posture, and balance. It can also affect fine motor skills, gross motor skills and oral motor performance.

3. Hypoxic encephalopathy.

This is a condition in which the brain of the unborn baby does not receive enough oxygen and blood.

4.Softening of periventricular leukemia.

This type of brain injury includes death or necrosis of white matter in the brain due to lack of oxygen or blood flow to the ventricles (nerve fibers that carry messages from the brain to the muscles of the body), or the periventricular region around parts of the brain.

5. Delayed growth.

Fetal hypoxia can lead to delays in the baby’s motor, physical, speech and mental development.

6. Mental retardation.

Continuous periods of hypoxia or lack of oxygen are one of the ways in which a mentally healthy fetus can become infected at birth.

7. Seizure disorders.

Certain types of head and brain injury can cause seizures as well as seizure disorders in a newborn. Specifically, if the baby’s head after birth cannot pass through the birth canal, then his or her oxygen supply may be compromised. As a result, some seizure disorders may arise due to hypoxia and other associated complications.

8. Paralysis.

Fetal hypoxia and excessive force used during childbirth are some of the ways a fetus can become partially or completely paralyzed at birth.Given the fact that a prolonged pregnancy may involve a normal labored delivery, it may sometimes be necessary to use more force in addition to some obstetric aids to free the baby from the birth canal. Therefore, injuries such as paralysis may be more likely.

References :

Asphyxia Neonatorum، من موقع:،

Lack of Oxygen at Birth Can Cause Long-Term Effects for Babies، من موقع:

Complications of Birth Asphyxia، من موقع:،

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button