Investigating Cerebral Palsy Resulting From Birth Injury

A birth injury that causes cerebral palsy should be carefully looked into to determine if medical negligence played a part.

Cerebral palsy caused by a birth injury will have a life long impact on the family.

Cerebral palsy caused by a birth injury may have a life long impact on the family.

Cerebral palsy is among the most common developmental disabilities in children in the U.S. According to statistics, as many as 764,000 kids and adults in the United States are suffering from at least one symptom of cerebral palsy. Every year, 8,000-10,000 new cases of cerebral palsy are diagnosed every year.

What is Cerebral Palsy?

Cerebral palsy is a term used for a variety of neurological disorders that cause problems in muscle coordination. It usually cannot be diagnosed at birth, and is detected when the child fails to meet developmental milestones. Quite often, the condition is diagnosed after the child reaches age two or three.

Symptoms can range from being mild to severe. Common symptoms are rigid or spastic arms, lack of movement control, impaired brain function, and hearing and vision loss. Some other issues associated with cerebral palsy are difficulty speaking, swallowing, and eating.

What Causes Cerebral Palsy?

In seventy percent of cases, cerebral palsy is caused by congenital reasons and develops during pregnancy. Ten percent of cases are caused by injury or disease during the early developmental stage in childhood. Unfortunately, twenty percent of cerebral palsy cases are caused by a birth injury. When cerebral palsy develops because of a birth injury, it is caused by a lack of oxygen supply to the infant’s brain during delivery or labor.

Cerebral Palsy Requires Lifelong Care

Cerebral palsy cannot be cured. However, with proper care and treatment, people suffering from cerebral palsy may lead a normal and productive life. People with cerebral palsy may need medication, surgery, therapy, and adaptive equipment. Cerebral palsy care involves substantial expenditure in terms of both time and money. It is estimated that the average lifelong care and treatment cost of cerebral palsy is close to $1 million.

Cerebral Palsy Resulting From Medical Negligence

Some cases of cerebral palsy are caused by medical negligence that result in lack of oxygen supply to the infant’s brain. Some common medical mistakes that cause cerebral palsy are:

• Failure to identify or treat infections during pregnancy.
• Failure to detect a prolapsed or ruptured umbilical cord.
• Failure to properly monitor fetal heart rate during pregnancy and childbirth.
• Failure to perform or a delay in performing a Cesarean section when it is medically necessary.
• Negligence in the use of instruments such as forceps and vacuum during delivery.

It is important to get a thorough medical examination of your child to discover whether it was caused by medical negligence, and if you can file a lawsuit against the doctor or hospital at fault. Like most other medical malpractice cases, cases involving birth injury related cerebral palsy are quite complicated. It is important to consult an experienced St. Louis medical malpractice attorney who specializes in birth injury lawsuits.

Call Zevan and Davidson Law Firm at (314) 588-7200 for a free consultation.


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