Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension in Newborns

Persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn (PPHN) is a form of life-threatening hypertension that occurs when there is failure in the circulatory transition from womb to birth. It generally showcases as pulmonary hypertension that leads to hypoxemia and right-to-left intracardiac shunting of the newborn’s blood. Although PPHN can exist without the symptoms of acute prenatal distress, it is still important to have the newborn checked if he or she is marked with lability in the concentration of oxygen in the blood.

The most common symptoms of PHHN are: asphyxia, systemic hypotension, meconium staining (the excreting of the meconium into the amniotic fluid), cyanosis (skin discoloration brought about by low oxygen levels), and symptoms of shock. There are several tests that would help determine PHHN, and your doctor would ask about the symptoms as well as the pregnancy history, along with physical examinations. There are a number of ways a newborn may suffer from PHHN, and according to the website of Williams Kherkher, taking the anti-depressant Zoloft while pregnant can be one of them. Zoloft is has been linked to a number of severe birth defects, and has been subjected to a number of lawsuits.

Aside from dangerous medications, other factors that can lead to PPHN are medical errors or malpractices. According to the website of the Goings Law Firm, LLC, medical errors or malpractice that leads to injuries have serious effects on the quality of life of the newborn. When the injury was caused by the negligence of the medical staff in handling the birth, and which eventually lead to the life-threatening condition of the newborn, the parents can file for a personal injury or medical malpractice lawsuit.

There are medications and treatments that can help in caring for the condition. Consulting with the doctor would help in preparing a proper treatment for the newborn, as each case can be different. Treatment for PPHN is generally aimed to improve the level of oxygen in the blood, as well as relax the blood vessels in the newborn’s lungs to maintain a normal blood pressure. It should be noted that newborns with PPHN should be kept warm and have limited stimulation.