Periventricular Leukomalacia Birth Injuries Explained by our Bend/Portland, Oregon Birth Injury Lawyers

Understanding Periventricular Leukomalacia (PVL) Birth Injuries from Our Bend/Portland, Oregon Birth Injury Lawyers

Periventricular Leukomalacia, or PVL, is a devastating diagnosis which could cause catastrophic injury to a newborn.  This is one of the worst diagnoses that a parent could hear for their newborn.  Most parents have a significant number of questions and concerns after their loved one was diagnosed with PVL, including how it happened.  While there are not exact causes known, there are many possible causes and factors which may result in PVL or increase the risks of PVL.  Unfortunately, many of the causes are likely due to medical malpractice.  Our Bend/Portland, Oregon birth injury lawyers explain what Periventricular Leukomalacia or PVL is, how it is caused, and why it might be due to medical malpractice.

What is Periventricular Leukomalacia?

Periventricular Leukomalacia, or PVL, is a condition which affects the brain around the ventricles.  There are two main types of brain tissue, white matter and grey matter.  Brains have four ventricles.  PVL is named after “leuko” which refers to white brain matter, “malacia” which means a softening or hole, and “periventricular” which refers to the areas around the ventricles.  Thus, PVL is a condition affecting and causing a softening of tissue around the ventricles.

The white matter around the ventricles is largely made up of myelinated axons, which are neuron tails and pathways which connects portions of the brain together.  Thus, the white matter of the brain is a massage relying.  But it is also an area of the brain which affects learning and other brain functions.  

Therefore, PVL results in nervous system and developmental problems in babies, including cerebral palsy.  Infants with PVL may also have other difficulty with movements and motor function, including picking things up, moving, crawling, and control of extremities.  There is no cure for PVL and disabilities with PVL are permanent, although some difficulties may be rehabilitated with physical therapy.

How Could PVL be Caused by Oregon Birth Injuries and Medical Malpractice?

There are no exactly known causes for PVl.  However, they most accepted causes are due to a lack of blood flow around the ventricles.  During gestation, these ventricles are particularly susceptible and prone to damage.  A decrease in blood flow could result in problems with the ventricles due to hypoxia, or a lack of oxygen.  Actions or inactions by medical providers in failing to treat this decrease in blood flow could be a main cause.  

For instance, conditions such as preeclampsia, eclampsia, maternal diabetes, excessive contractions, improper medication use, ruptured umbilical cord, or other conditions which result in a decrease of oxygen could be the cause of PVl.  Other conditions such as HIE could also cause or contribute to PVL.  Thus, medical professionals which fail to care for or treat these blood flow issues may be negligent in caring for the baby.

In addition, there is some believe that infections cause PVL.  This includes infections such as meningitis which can be particularly devastating.  Other infections could also cause PVL, including intrauterine infections, UTIs, and possibly STDs.  If these infections are not quickly identified and treated, they may result in PVL and complications to the baby.  Thus, simple testing by healthcare providers could prevent some risks of PVL.

If Your Child Was Diagnosed with PVL, Ask Our Bend/Portland, Oregon Birth Injury Lawyers For Help

Periventricular Leukomalacia is a devastating condition which has no cure and no way of reversing the damage to the developing brain.  This means that a child who has PVL could have a life-long suffering, medical bills, and future physical and occupational therapy.  If you or a loved one have been seriously injured or killed as a result of medical malpractice contact the Oregon Medical Malpractice Lawyers at Kuhlman Law at our number below or fill out the intake form.  We offer a free initial case evaluation and handle cases on a contingency fee which means that you pay no money unless we recover. 

Our law firm handles cases throughout the state including Bend and Portland Oregon, Redmond, Central Oregon, Multnomah County, Deschutes County, Salem, Eugene, Corvallis, Lane County, Medford, Gresham, Albany, Medford, Beaverton, Umatilla, Pendleton, and Hillsboro.  

We also have an office in Minneapolis, Minnesota and take medical malpractice cases throughout the Twin Cities, including St. Paul, Hennepin County, Ramsey County, Dakota County, Washington County, Anoka County, Scott County, Blaine, Stillwater, and Saint Paul Minnesota.  

Please act quickly, there is a limited time (Statute of Limitations) in which you can bring a claim under the law.

For a free case evaluation


(541) 385-1999 in Bend, Oregon
(503) 479-3646 in Portland, Oregon
(612) 444-3374 in Minnesota

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