Compensation awarded following hypoxic ischemic brain injury sustained at birth despite brain cooling therapy


A claim was made on behalf of our client in relation to brain damage sustained at the time of her birth. Our client’s mother suffered a ruptured uterus during delivery and required an emergency caesarean section.

This led to a delay in delivery, and as a result our client suffered a hypoxic ischemic injury which initially left her in a very grave condition. She was subsequently diagnosed with asymmetric dyskinetic cerebral palsy.

Our client was sent for cooling therapy immediately following her birth and her condition started to improve. After many weeks, she was discharged from hospital and proceeded to progress well, reaching many of her developmental milestones. However, at around four years of age, subtle neurological problems started to develop and legal advice was sought.

Following investigation, a letter of claim was sent to the trust and an admission of liability was made. Judgment was entered and substantial interim payments of damages were obtained in order to provide ongoing support and private therapy, as well as to enable the purchase of a suitable house which was subsequently adapted for our client’s use.

Settlement of the claim was postponed until we were able to assess our client’s future needs. At the stage of the initial investigation, she had difficulties with mobility, using a wheelchair for longer journeys, and she had impairment of fine motor skills, which meant she needed assistance with daily activities such as food preparation and dressing. The decision to delay the final assessment of damages, although frustrating for her parents, proved to be the right course of action as her needs increased over time and difficulties in relation to anxiety and fatigue only became apparent at a later stage.

Settlement took into account lifelong needs and included annual payments for care and case management. A significant lump sum payment was made to cover the costs of therapies, specialist equipment, education, further modifications to her property, deputyship costs and in recognition of lost earnings and pension.

Our client’s mother said: “The achievement is quite amazing … thank you so much for all of the work you’ve done for my daughter, as well as your team. It will make an immeasurable difference to her life."

Partner Stephanie Code led our team advising on this claim, assisted by senior paralegal Aline Constan.


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Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in England and Wales with registered number OC311575 and is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP