How to Identify Signs and Symptoms of Birth Injuries in Newborns

Welcoming a newborn into the world is an exciting and joyous time for any family. However, it's important to be aware that birth injuries can occur, and early detection is crucial for prompt medical intervention.

1. Abnormal Breathing Patterns

One of the first signs of a birth injury is abnormal breathing patterns in newborns. Keep an eye out for any irregularities such as rapid breathing, grunting, or wheezing. These symptoms may indicate respiratory distress, which could be a result of a birth injury.


  • Observe your baby's breathing patterns regularly.
  • Consult a healthcare professional if you notice any abnormalities.

2. Difficulty with Feeding

Difficulties with feeding, such as poor latch, excessive crying during feeding, or difficulty swallowing, can also be indicative of a birth injury. These issues may arise from nerve damage or musculoskeletal problems, making it important to address them promptly.


  • Seek guidance from a lactation consultant if you encounter feeding difficulties.
  • Ensure your baby is positioned correctly during feeding.

3. Persistent Jaundice

While jaundice is common in newborns, persistent jaundice beyond two weeks could be a sign of an underlying birth injury. It may indicate liver dysfunction or an issue with the baby's blood cells, requiring further evaluation.


  • Monitor your baby's jaundice levels and consult a healthcare professional if it persists.
  • Follow any recommended treatment plans diligently.

4. Limited Range of Motion

Birth injuries can sometimes result in limited range of motion in your baby's limbs. Watch out for any noticeable stiffness, asymmetrical movement, or difficulty moving certain body parts. These signs may suggest nerve damage or musculoskeletal issues.


  • Regularly engage in gentle exercises and stretches with your baby.
  • Consult a pediatrician or physical therapist if you observe any limitations in mobility.

5. Abnormal Sleeping Patterns

Newborns tend to sleep a lot, but if you notice extreme difficulty in waking your baby, irregular sleep patterns, or excessive fussiness during sleep, it could be a red flag for a birth injury. These symptoms may indicate neurological issues or pain.


  • Keep a sleep diary to track your baby's sleeping patterns.
  • Consult a healthcare professional if you have concerns regarding your baby's sleep.

Early identification of signs and symptoms of birth injuries is crucial for ensuring your baby receives the necessary medical attention. If you notice any of the aforementioned signs or have any concerns, it is important to consult a healthcare professional promptly.

At Comerford Chilson & Moser, L.L.P., we understand the challenges families face when dealing with birth injuries. Our experienced medical malpractice teamĀ in Winston-Salem, NC, is here to provide you with the legal guidance and support you need.

If you believe your child's birth injury was a result of medical negligence, contact us today for a free consultation.

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