Birth Injury

Periventricular leukomalacia (PVL)

What Causes PVL?

Periventricular leukomalacia (PVL) commonly occurs between 28 and 34 weeks gestation, it is normally seen in premature babies, but we have had cases where it has also been caused at term. And just because a baby is born prematurely, it does not mean that PVL is inevitable. The two main causes of PVL are hypoxia – a reduction of oxygen in the blood supply to the brain – and infection. In pregnancy and labour, there are a number of events that can cause hypoxia, and a number of infections that can present in both mother and baby, such as Group B Strep (GBS) or chorioamnionitis (infection of the placental membranes). Hypoxia and infection can also happen during the neonatal period and lead to PVL if not treated appropriately.

When does a claim arise?

If there were signs that a baby was suffering from hypoxia in the womb, such as an abnormal heart rate, and these were not acted upon by midwives or doctors before damage to the brain occurred, there may be a claim for clinical negligence. Equally, if there were signs that the mother or baby was suffering from an infection and this was not treated with the appropriate antibiotics and care, there may also be grounds for a claim.

Our specialist team

We pride ourselves on being experts in brain injury and birth injury claims, having obtained compensation for many children suffering with disabilities caused by PVL and helping to change their lives for the better. We don’t shy away from difficult cases, so even if you have been turned down by another firm, contact us to see if we can help. We also have a dedicated brain injury website that provides a lot more information on the work we do to help those living with brain injury.

Frequently Asked Questions

If your child suffers an injury from negligent medical treatment during your pregnancy, the birth or postnatally you may be entitled to make a claim.

If you are ever unsure if you have a case, it is best to contact a solicitor.

We can provide a second opinion free of charge. We have acted for many clients who have been told they don’t have a case, but by looking at the claim in a different way and with our expertise, we have gone on to be successful

All birth injury claims are different and this depends upon when a final prognosis is known and a claim can be valued.

Once we obtain an admission of liability in your case we can request an immediate payment to help with your needs and put support in place.

Medical negligence claims rarely go to court, with only a small percentage of the more complex cases ending up there. However, in the unlikely event that your case reaches court, we will be by your side throughout the process.

It is important to pursue your claim as quickly as possible due to time limits and to also enable us to help you obtain compensation as soon as possible. This is especially the case in complex cases as the process can be lengthy.

You have to start your claim within 3-years (limitation period) from when the injury occurred or when you first became aware of any potential negligence or injury as a result. However, the time limit only begins when a child reaches 18 years of age.

There may be several options open to you to include legal aid, No Win No Fee and legal expense insurance. We can advise you on the correct funding method for you. We have designed a No Win No Fee package to protect you from paying any costs should your claim not be successful.


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Experts in birth injury claims

We have helped many families obtain substantial compensation for injuries suffered at birth, giving them financial security that has truly changed their lives for the better. Contact one of our birth injury lawyers today to see how we can help, at no cost to you.

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