Neonatal Stroke

A neonatal stroke happens when there is a disruption or blockage in the flow of blood to the brain of an infant during the initial 28 days following birth. A perinatal stroke is one that occurs within the first week of life and is referred to by its medical term "perinatal stroke." When a newborn suffers from a stroke, the brain is deprived of oxygen, and the blood arteries lead to the brain becoming blocked. The risk of a baby having a stroke in their first year of life is approximately 1 in 4,000. On the other hand, given how challenging it is to identify a newborn stroke, the true incidence rate might be higher than previously thought.

The Common Symptoms of Neonatal Stroke

Seizures are the most prevalent indication of a newborn stroke, and they can start happening as soon as the first day after delivery. The following are some other symptoms and signs that may point to a newborn stroke:

  • excessive drowsiness and lethargic state (hypotonia)
  • Problems with eating and drinking
  • a deficit of strength on one side of the body (hemiparesis)
  • neurological impairment
  • apnea (periods where breathing stops temporarily) 

On the other hand, many infants do not display any visual signs of a stroke till they are significantly older. Symptoms that a child may have suffered a stroke as a neonate include speech delays and trouble maintaining equilibrium.

What causes Neonatal Stroke?

There are a number of distinct causes and risk factors that, when combined, might increase the risk of a neonatal stroke. One of the causes is hypoxia, which takes place when an infant does not receive enough oxygen. Because of this, the activity in the brain may become erratic. The overall health of the mother can also play a role in determining whether or not her baby will suffer from a stroke. If the mother has a history of diseases like coagulation disorders, autoimmune disorders, diabetes, congenital heart disease, or trauma, then the likelihood of a neonatal stroke occurring in the baby is increased.

If a mother has been using cocaine while she is pregnant, they are putting both themselves and their unborn baby in danger. Neonatal strokes can be caused by infections in the mother, particularly those that impact the central nervous system, as well as other systemic infections.

When should I see a doctor?

Even though a baby's brain isn't fully developed yet, a neonatal stroke can have long-lasting effects. Because of this, it is important to find the problem quickly and treat it right away. Apollo at Motinagar has a diverse group of experts who can quickly and thoroughly find out if a stroke has happened and why. In the neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) at Motinagar Apollo, they provide special care for newborns with strokes. Call them at 1860-500-1066 to get in touch.

Treatment of Neonatal Stroke

There are two options for treating a newborn stroke. The first one is therapeutic hypothermia, in which the brain is cooled. The second technique is hyperbaric oxygen therapy.

Therapeutic hypothermia on the head helps treat newborn strokes. This treatment is called "brain cooling." Lowering brain temperature slows brain activity to prevent injury. It prevents brain overheating from increased blood flow. Blood vessel constriction also lowers brain damage.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy involves placing a newborn in a pressurized environment with 100% oxygen. One can inhale more oxygen when pressurized than while breathing pure oxygen at standard air pressure. This lets the baby breathe only oxygen, which can compensate for the lack of oxygen.

Request an appointment at Apollo Cradle, DELHI-NCR - Moti Nagar. Call 1860-500-1066 to book an appointment.

1. How can Neonatal Stroke diagnose?

Diagnosing perinatal stroke needs brain imaging. Computer-assisted tomography (CT) scans or Ultrasounds can detect a newborn's acute stroke. Nevertheless, magnetic resonance imaging is the most effective test. MRIs can detect all kinds of perinatal strokes.

2. How Can I Prevent a Stroke in My Infant?

The prevention of a stroke in your infant begins with you. Due to the prevalence of neonatal strokes during pregnancy, it is crucial that you take good care of yourself. This ensures that your unborn child has a healthy blood supply while still inside the womb. Maintain healthy nutrition, avoid smoking, and have adequate hydration.

3. What Should I Do If I Suspect My Newborn Has Suffered a Neonatal Stroke?

You should ensure that your child receives medical care as soon as feasible. The earlier your child receives medical care, the less probable they are to develop additional health concerns. If you suspect that your child may have suffered a stroke, contact a medical expert immediately.

4. What are the risk factors for neonatal stroke and what causes it?

Most perinatal strokes are hard to prove to have a clear cause. Strokes during pregnancy can't be stopped. A mother can't do anything to keep her child from having a perinatal stroke. It's not because of the mother. Depending on the nature of the perinatal stroke, the most probable reason will be different.

5. How can we keep Neonatal Strokes from happening again?

There is a very low chance that a perinatal stroke will happen again. Rarely you will need medicine or other ways to prevent a stroke.

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