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Kernicterus Lawyers in New Hampshire

What Is Kernicterus & What Causes It?

Kernicterus is a type of brain damage caused by untreated jaundice. Jaundice occurs when too much of the chemical bilirubin builds up in a baby’s blood, leading to yellow- or orange-colored skin. Typically, skin discoloration starts at the head before eventually spreading to the rest of the body. Other symptoms of jaundice include extreme fussiness, sleeping issues, eating/feeding problems, and a noticeable decrease in dirty or wet diapers. While jaundice is relatively common—affecting anywhere from 60 to 80% of infants born in the U.S.—it is extremely important that it is treated quickly and correctly. If jaundice goes on for too long, it can lead to kernicterus, which can have serious, life-altering consequences for both the child and his or her family.

If your child was diagnosed with kernicterus, our firm can help you understand your legal options. Contact our New Hampshire kernicterus attorneys at (603) 323-4622 for a free consultation.

Symptoms of Kernicterus

Although jaundice often goes away on its own, it can sometimes lead to serious complications when left untreated. When excessive bilirubin builds up in the brain, it can cause severe brain damage. If your child exhibited signs of severe jaundice, it’s important to also watch for signs of kernicterus.

Common early signs of kernicterus include:

  • Fever
  • Muscle spasms
  • Reduced muscle tone
  • Limpness or stiffness of the body
  • Abnormal eye movements
  • Trouble feeding
  • Low energy
  • Drowsiness
  • High-pitched cries
  • Uncontrollable crying

As the child ages, he or she may also exhibit other symptoms of kernicterus, including seizures, poor muscle development, sensory problems, stained tooth enamel, and muscle spasms.

Left untreated, kernicterus can lead to disabilities that can affect your child’s quality of life. Complications can include athetoid cerebral palsy, difficulty or inability to speak, poor muscle tone or spasms, lack of coordination, intellectual disabilities, and other problems.

Treatment for Kernicterus

Treatment for kernicterus focuses on reducing the amount of bilirubin in the body. The most common treatment is light therapy (phototherapy). The child’s body is exposed to a specific type of light that helps the body break down unconjugated bilirubin more quickly.

Unfortunately, kernicterus is irreversible. Once symptoms have begun to appear, treatment can only stop further brain damage; it cannot undo damage that has already occurred. For this reason, it is crucial that mothers who are at a higher risk for delivering babies with jaundice receive the proper medical care. Infants that show signs of jaundice should be closely monitored and receive treatment as needed in order to prevent kernicterus. When medical professionals fail to take the necessary precautions and measures to address jaundice and kernicterus, the consequences can be devastating.

Contact Abramson, Brown & Dugan Today

At our firm, we have helped countless individuals and families throughout the state of New Hampshire with highly complex medical malpractice and birth injury cases. We have achieved more settlements and verdicts in medical malpractice cases than any other firm in the state. Our New Hampshire birth injury attorneys understand the complexities involved in these types of cases and use their extensive legal and medical knowledge to build strong cases for our clients. Our team is here to provide you with the compassionate, personalized legal representation you need.

Request your free initial consultation when you call (603) 323-4622 or fill out an online contact form.

Our Team

  • Mark Abramson

    Mark Abramson Attorney

    Mark A. Abramson is an experienced New Hampshire birth injury attorney and a founder of Abramson, Brown & Dugan. He has devoted the past 40+ years to helping victims of medical malpractice and catastrophic injury rebuild their lives. At the firm, he regularly handles highly complex cases, including those involving birth injuries and wrongful death.

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  • Kevin Dugan

    Kevin Dugan Attorney

    Kevin F. Dugan is a skilled New Hampshire birth injury attorney with more than 30 years of experience representing victims of medical malpractice throughout the state. He became a founding member of Abramson, Brown & Dugan after relocating from Florida—where he completed his undergraduate and law degree—to New Hampshire.

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  • Holly Haines

    Holly Haines Attorney

    Holly B. Haines is a skilled New Hampshire birth injury attorney who has been with the firm since 2003. Prior to joining Abramson, Brown & Dugan, she served as a judicial law clerk at the New Hampshire Supreme Court and the New Hampshire Superior Court for three years.

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  • Jared Green

    Jared Green Attorney

    Jared R. Green is an experienced birth injury attorney in New Hampshire. He has been working with Abramson, Brown & Dugan since 1992 when he was still in law school. Over the past 25+ years, he has helped injured victims and their families throughout the state, providing sound legal counsel and dedicated representation.

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  • Nick Abramson

    Nick Abramson Attorney

    Nick Abramson joined Abramson, Brown & Dugan in 2016 after spending four years as a federal criminal prosecutor. Now, with the firm, he focuses his practice on high-damage personal injury and medical malpractice cases. He has handled a variety of complex matters, including failure to diagnose, medication errors, and wrongful births.

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  • Elie Maalouf

    Elie Maalouf Attorney

    Elie Maalouf is an associate attorney at Abramson, Brown & Dugan. As a skilled New Hampshire birth injury lawyer, he focuses on representing victims of medical negligence and severe personal injury throughout the state. He strives to provide each client with the compassionate, one-on-one attention they deserve and the aggressive advocacy they need.

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  • Eva Bleich

    Eva Bleich Attorney

    Eva Bleich has been with Abramson, Brown & Dugan since 2008. Prior to joining the firm, she served as a plaintiffs’ medical malpractice lawyer in Philadelphia for 20 years. In her time spent as a New Hampshire birth injury lawyer, Eva has helped numerous individuals and families navigate the medical malpractice litigation process.

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Hear From Our Clients

  • Abramson, Brown & Dugan "Should be given an A rating"

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  • Abramson, Brown & Dugan "I’ve recommended them and will continue to recommend them to others who’ve suffered as a result of medical malpractice."

    - Lisa M.

  • Abramson, Brown & Dugan "Kevin kept in touch with me, giving me updates every step of the way. He really cares. Even when we resolved the case, Kevin told me to keep in touch with him. If you can have a wonderful experience in a lawyer’s office, we had it!"

    - Norman J.

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