You have just received a devastating diagnosis: your baby has cerebral palsy. No one seems to be able to tell you why this happened, but you have heard that a mistake during delivery could be the cause. The only way to find out could be to educate yourself and call a medical malpractice attorney.
The Basics of Cerebral Palsy
The term cerebral palsy refers to a group of disorders that affect brain and nervous system functions. In most cases, cerebral palsy is caused by injuries to or abnormalities of the brain as the baby grows in the womb, but can also be the result of a head injury, brain infection, or bleeding on the brain during the first two years of life, when the child’s brain is still developing. Cerebral palsy can also be the result of complications during labor and delivery. Depending on the type and severity of brain damage that has occurred, children with cerebral palsy may experience the following:
- Lack of muscle control and coordination
- Difficulty breathing
- Lack of bladder or bowel control
- Difficulty eating
- Visual impairment or blindness
- Hearing loss
- Food aspiration (the sucking of food or fluid into the lungs)
- Gastroesophageal reflux (spitting up)
- Speech problems
- Tooth decay
- Sleep disorders
- Osteoporosis (weak, brittle bones)
- Behavior problems
- Intellectual disabilities
There is no cure for cerebral palsy and treatment is focused on helping the person become as independent as possible through therapy, rehabilitation, and home health care.
If Negligence Caused Your Baby’s Cerebral Palsy, Get Help
While it was once believed that oxygen deprivation during delivery was the primary cause of cerebral palsy, it is now understood that this accounts for only about nine percent of cases. In the remaining cases, premature birth, complications during birth, and problems occurring immediately after birth cause the damage to the brain. In any one of these scenarios, a mistake or negligence on the part of medical staff could be to blame. Don’t face your child’s uncertain future without at least finding out if you might be able to recover damages. Fill out our online contact form now.