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Decreased Oxygen During Labor


Do you want to learn more about decreased oxygen during labor? Watch our video below to learn about a common birth injury called hypoxia during labor.


Learn More:

What is HIE? – Birth Asphyxia (Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy)

Anoxic Brain Injury

What Constitutes A Medical Malpractice Lawsuit?


Video Transcript

0:00 Intro
0:34 Decreased Oxygen During Labor Complications
1:08 Issues of Uterus Contractions During Labor
1:59 Fetal Monitoring

This is Dr. Francois Bludeau, OB/GYN in Birmingham, AL, part of the LawMD team. I’m a surgeon, obstetrician, and lawyer that does a lot of birth-related cases. I wanted to spend a moment talking to you about decreased oxygen, and how hypoxia can cause issues during labor.

0:34 Decreased Oxygen During Labor Complications

Some people understand during the course of labor, a woman is usually monitored with a fetal heart monitor. That monitoring system basically tracks the baby’s heartbeat during the course of labor. The monitors also track the frequency and severity or strength of contractions, and sometimes mothers receive medications to either speed the contractions up or make them strong, or sometimes medicines to slow the contractions down a little bit.

1:08 Issues of Uterus Contractions During Labor

During the course of labor, as the uterus is contracting, for the moment that it’s contracting, there’s decreased blood flow to the baby. If the baby starts to get too much decreased blood flow during the course of labor, the baby will start to increase its heart rate and then start to have irregular changes in the heart rate. It will then start to have what we call decelerations, especially called late decelerations on the monitor.

When those types of events are occurring, that could be a sign the baby’s not getting enough oxygen during the course of labor. If that goes on for too long a period of time, then the baby can sustain a brain injury or hypoxic injury to the brain.

1:59 Fetal Monitoring

As a general rule, it’s important during the course of labor, for the obstetrical team to have some assessment of how they think the baby’s doing, especially some assessment of whether or not they think the baby’s getting enough blood flow and oxygen during the course of labor.

If they’re using Pitocin or using a drug to speed the labor or make the contractions stronger, they have to be careful not to make the contractions so strong or so frequent that the baby can’t rest between contractions, and make sure the baby’s getting enough oxygen to the brain.

Everyone ought to be concerned about oxygen levels during labor and about how the baby’s doing during labor. If you’ve been involved with a situation where your baby suffered a birth injury, and you think it may have been inadequate monitoring or inadequate decision-making in regard to delivering the baby sooner, send us your records. Let us look at them. We’ll be glad to help you and tell you whether or not we think the doctors breached the standard of care in allowing an oxygen-related injury to occur during birth.

At LawMD, our physician-attorneys are committed to supporting parents and families who have been devastated by a birth injury diagnosis, such as hypoxia during labor.  More than 12 of our lawyers are also physicians.  As doctors, we understand the medicine in your case. As lawyers, we know how to use our medical knowledge to get justice for our clients.  If you or your loved one has been permanently or seriously injured due to negligence, contact the Medical-Legal team at LawMD.

For serious injuries, LawMD is the right medicine for justice.

Thank you.



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