Medical staff will often diagnose HIE using head imaging – they take pictures of the baby’s brain using ultrasound or MRI to see if there are any abnormalities. They can conduct numerous tests, including:
- CT scans
- PET scans
- Blood glucose tests
- Arterial blood gas tests
Doctors order diagnostic imaging when they suspect that the baby suffered oxygen deprivation. These suspicions can occur if the labor and delivery were traumatic or if there were complications during birth. In some cases, HIE-related brain damage will not show up until a child shows poor motor control, delayed developmental milestones or other concerning signs.