Horner’s syndrome is a birth injury that can result when the nerves that connect the brainstem to the eyes and face are cut off or pinched. The symptoms include various physical deformities of the eye. Rarely caused by a birth defect, Horner's syndrome is usually the result of a birth injury, and many of the victims are entitled to significant financial damages. To determine liability in a case of Horner's syndrome it is typically done with the help of a Maryland birth injury attorney.
What Are the Symptoms of Horner Syndrome?
The symptoms of Horner’s syndrome include
- Ptosis: when the upper eyelid droops
- Enophthalmos: when the eye is sunken into the orbital cavity
- Miosis: excessive constriction of the pupil of the eye
- Anhidrosis: inability to sweat on one side of the face
According to the Mayo Clinic, additional symptoms in young children include: “Lighter iris color in the affected eye of a child under the age of 1” and”Change in color on the affected side of the face that would typically appear from heat, physical exertion or emotional reactions.”
What Causes Horner Syndrome?
Horner syndrome, which is also known as oculosympathetic palsy or Bernard-Horner syndrome, is usually the result of a birth injury. The most common causes of Horner’s syndrome in children is an injury to the neck and shoulder area during a difficult delivery.
In rare cases, it can be a congenital condition. Horner’s syndrome is caused by damage to nerves in the sympathetic system, which are involved with heart rate, pupil dilation/restriction, blood pressure, sweating, and other reactions our bodies have to adjust to changes in our environment, such as temperature, light, and others.
Horner syndrome is not common. It affects approximately 1 in 6,000 people.
Treatment for Horner’s Syndrome
The prognosis and treatment of Horner’s syndrome depend on the underlying cause of the nerve damage. The symptoms of Horner’s syndrome do not have long-term risks for the health of the eye or the individual, but the cause of Horner’s syndrome can be something that is life-threatening.
Is Horner’s Syndrome a Form of Medical Malpractice?
Horner’s syndrome can be a serious medical issue with potentially life-threatening consequences. In very rare cases, the condition is due to unavoidable birth defects. It is far more common as the result of nerve damage due to difficult births. Medical malpractice can be established if there were known risk factors that were not properly addressed. There can also be a liability if the established practice of medical intervention was not delivered or if it was delivered too late. If you have a question regarding a Horner’s syndrome or a birth injury, the doctor or hospital might not be willing to discuss all the facts of the situation transparently. To get the truth, and to get financial recovery for the expensive cost of a medical injury, contact Brown & Barron online or by calling 410-346-0206} for a free, no-obligation review of your case.