Caput succedaneum and cephalohematoma are similar – but distinct – birth injuries which cause a baby’s head to swell. They are typically not serious and will heal themselves over a relatively short period of time. For most worried parents, it is not a big deal if it is not coupled with a brain bleed or other cerebral insult. But these conditions can lead to more severe complications in the absence of a prompt diagnosis, vigilance, and effective treatment. Furthermore, the possibility that one of these conditions is connected with or arising from a more serious birth injury also means that immediate medical attention should be given to diagnosing and providing any necessary treatment for these conditions.
The importance of prompt and effective diagnosis and treatment for these conditions, unfortunately, means that what would otherwise have been harmless can grow to become a more serious – sometimes life-long – condition on account of medical negligence. This can arise from failing to recognize the issue during or after delivery, a failure to provide proper treatment (such as a C-section, when warranted), or even failing to diagnose precipitating causes of the injuries prior to birth. If your child has suffered from one of one of these conditions as a consequence of medical neglect, you should be eligible to receive compensation. Contact me if you are looking for answers about your child’s case.
I am going to walk you through some of the most frequently asked questions about caput succedaneum and cephalohematoma.