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Neonatal Ischemic-Hypoxic Encephalopathy (lecture) - Dr.Mohamed Soliman

Hypoxaemic-ischaemic encephalopathy is the most frequent cause of neurological morbidity in infancy (Volpe 2008). Hypoxaemic events are characterised by a decrease of the pO2 and pH and a simultaneous increase of the pCO2Hypoxic and ischaemic events may cause a simultaneous decrease of the blood pressure. Brain perfusion may therefore drop under a critical limit (Volpe2008).
Asphyctic events may cause death of nervous cells and lead to cytotoxic brain oedema.
Brain oedema on the other hand can cause additional death of nervous cells (Volpe 2008).
As the brain is extremely susceptible to suffer from a fall of oxygen and brain perfusion, sonographic evaluation of the brains of neonates with asphyxial events has to be performed.
Especially the watershed regions of the vascular supply to the brain are damaged most severely.
Due to the different vascular supply of the brain of preterm and term infants, different forms of damage have to be differentiated: In preterm infants periventricular leucomalacia occurs. In term babies the parasagittal region and the basal ganglia are primarily injured.

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