A man charged with physically abusing a baby boy who now has permanent brain damage will stay in custody until his next appearance in Whakatane District Court on May 18 .

The 38-year-old eastern Bay of Plenty man was arrested in Auckland on Wednesday and made a brief appearance in Manukau District Court yesterday and was remanded in custody.

Police said he faces charges of wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm after the four-month-old baby boy received non-accidental injuries leading to permanent and severe brain damage.

He also faced eight other charges, including male assaults female, assault with intent to injure and receiving.

The baby was admitted to Starship Hospital in Auckland on April 29 and doctors feared he could die.

Inspector Sandra Venables, area commander for eastern Bay of Plenty, told NZPA the baby was off life support but had severe brain damage.