2-Year-Old Has Brain Damage Reversed
I’m Ed Smith, a Loomis Brain Injury Lawyer. People in the medical community have been taught that most forms of brain damage are irreversible because the neurons do not regenerate. A recent news story has thrown this entire theory into question. A 2-year-old girl who was thought to have drowned in a swimming pool may have had some form of brain damage reversed.
Slipped Through a Gate
In February of 2016, a two-year-old girl made her way through a baby gate while her mother was in the shower. She somehow managed to get through a heavy door and fell into her family’s swimming pool. Unfortunately, she was in the water for around 15 minutes before she was discovered. During this time, she went into cardiac arrest, leading to a lack of oxygen delivery to her tissues, including the brain. This anoxic brain injury is distinct from a traumatic brain injury, which results from an external force. The child received CPR; however, she wasn’t successfully resuscitated for two hours.
Critical Care Stay
Patients who have suffered an anoxic event often have to stay in an ICU for an extended period of time. Regardless of a cause of the brain injury, they often experience a number of symptoms and require some sort of rehabilitation to prevent the development of long-term comorbidities. Unfortunately, imaging studies, such as MRIs, demonstrated extensive damage to the gray and white matter of the child’s brain. These scans also showed cerebral atrophy and the child was not responding to any stimuli, such as touch or sound. She also could not walk or talk. This type of damage is often thought to be irreversible.
A New Approach
The treating physician proposed multiple rounds of treatment with oxygen therapies to try and revive the child’s damaged brain. Oxygen therapy works by administering a gas that naturally occurs in the air at a higher pressure than is in a typical room. Because the pressure of the oxygen is higher, more of the oxygen will be “pushed” into the child’s red blood cells. Subsequently, this oxygen will be delivered at higher levels to her body’s various tissues, such as the brain. Hopefully, this increased oxygen content will lead to tissue repair and regeneration.
A Miraculous Recovery
After multiple rounds of this hyperbaric treatment, the child appears to have regained mental and physical function, she is now taking steps with the help of rehabilitation, showing improved cognition, and showing medical improvement according to various tests. There is still some residual brain damage; however, the cortical and white matter damage appears to have recovered some five months after the initial drowning event. Perhaps these novel results, after this new application of oxygen therapy, gives hope to other patients who have suffered a traumatic brain injury.
Contact an Experienced Loomis Brain Injury Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Loomis Brain Injury Lawyer. While drowning events are often thought to cause irreversible damage, hope may exist for some reversal. If your loved one has suffered a brain injury due to drowning, reach out to me at (916) 921-6400 for friendly, free advice. For people contacting me from outside of the general Loomis area, my toll-free line is (800) 404-5400.
I have been inducted into the California Chapter of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum. Included are a collection of personal injury attorneys who have been rated among the country’s top trial lawyers. Everyone in this forum has won verdicts and settled cases worth an excess of $1 Million Dollars.
Some of my various verdicts and settlements can be viewed here.
Source: Science Alert, 19 July 2017
Image Source: Used with permission under the Creative Commons Attribution License 3.0, Share-Alike. Via Wikimedia Commons