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Signs and treatments of Meconium Aspiration Syndrome, part 1

Prior to being born, a baby produces a dark green fecal matter known as meconium, which remains in the intestines until it is expelled during the first few days after the delivery. However, it is possible for a baby to experience stress that causes them to pass some of the meconium before leaving the uterus. The meconium then mixes with the amniotic fluid, which surrounds and provides oxygen to the fetus.

As a result, the baby could breathe the meconium mixed with the amniotic fluid. Such an event is known as meconium aspiration syndrome. MAS could occur just before, during or immediately after the baby is delivered. And because it can cause the baby to experience serious or even fatal complications, the physician and staff performing the delivery must be ready to spot the signs of MAS and respond immediately if necessary.

A newborn that exhibits the following symptoms may be experiencing MAS:

  • Respiratory distress, such as a stoppage of breathing or rapid breathing.
  • Low blood pressure.
  • Limpness.
  • Bluish skin tone, also known as cyanosis.

When a baby is suffering from MAS, it is imperative that the meconium is removed to allow for proper respiration. There should also be a thorough assessment to determine if the baby needs additional emergency treatment.

MAS can leave a baby with long-term issues and can even cause permanent brain damage. And a doctor who fails to properly treat a baby experiencing MAS could be considered as having been negligent. If you suspect that a doctor's negligent acts were responsible for your baby being injured during birth, you may want to bring the matter to the attention of a medical malpractice attorney who can advise you on your options for seeking damages.

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