The reasons why babies develop ROP is complicated, but it is more likely to occur in babies that:
- Are born very prematurely — particularly less than 32 weeks gestation
- Have a low birth weight of less than 3 pounds
- Needed oxygen treatment
Often premature babies need additional oxygen, and although it is necessary for the baby's survival, it can increase the risk of developing ROP.
Not All Premature Babies That Need Oxygen Develop ROP
Pediatricians monitor levels of oxygen a baby may need very carefully to ensure that enough oxygen is given for their survival, taking into account the effects this may have on the baby's eyes. ROP checks are a regular part of care for all premature babies born before 32 weeks.
Stages Of ROP
ROP is classified in five stages, with stage I being the most mild.
- Stage I: A mild abnormal growth of the blood vessel
- Stage II: A moderate abnormal growth of the blood vessel
Most infants suffering from stage I and II require no treatment as they will improve on their own and will later on develop a normal vision.
- Stage III: A severe abnormal growth of the blood vessel
- Stage IV: The retina is partially detached
- Stage V: Total retinal detachment
Laser therapy and cryotherapy, the treatments for retinopathy of prematurity, are invasive procedures to the eye. The long-term side effects of the treatment are not known. The treatments also destroy some side vision.
Contact Us To Learn More About Filing A Malpractice Claim
The Piscitelli Law Firm offers free initial case evaluations to families hurt by various types of medical malpractice, including a birth injury. Learn more about your options by calling 216-931-7000 or emailing our Mentor, Ohio, office. Our attorneys take cases on a contingency basis, which means you do not owe us fees unless our lawyer secures a successful outcome for you.