Cerebral palsy or CP is a term medical professionals use for a group of neurological disorders that impede muscle coordination and body movement. While there are many factors that can cause cerebral palsy, it can be caused by a birth injury in which the infant’s brain receives an insufficient amount of oxygen during birth or labor.
The Scope of the Problem
The Mayo Clinic reports that cerebral palsy occurs in about 2 to 4 out of 1,000 births in Europe and the United States. It is considered a “non-progressive” health condition, which means that regardless of how serious and debilitating it is at its outset, it does not usually get worse over time.
There are a number of different forms of CP that affect motor abilities and function. Three of the most common forms of cerebral palsy are athetoid cerebral palsy, ataxic cerebral palsy and spastic cerebral palsy. These three forms account for almost 80 percent of all cerebral palsy cases. Although most children who have cerebral palsy are born with it, it is possible that a proper diagnosis may not be made for years after the child has been born.
Hypoxia (lack of oxygen to the brain), asphyxia (lack of oxygen to the body) and birth trauma are all possible reasons a child may be born with cerebral palsy. While none of these factors automatically mean medical malpractice has occurred, it is possible that there were delivery mistakes or medical malpractice during child birth or labor.
What How Does Malpractice Cause CP?
Medical malpractice cases that originate from delivery mistakes or birth injuries can be quite complex from both a medical and legal standpoint. A few common causes of cerebral palsy when linked to medical malpractice are failure to detect an umbilical cord that is prolapsed; unreasonable mistakes and negligence in using instruments such as forceps and vacuum when performing a delivery; and failure to properly monitor the fetal heart rate before and during labor and birth.
Malpractice victims and their families are entitled to compensation for their losses. The Fitzgerald Law Firm is dedicated to the representation of children who suffer from cerebral palsy as well as other birth-related injuries. Our experienced team of medical malpractice attorneys will thoroughly and aggressively pursue these cases to recover compensation for the victims and their families. Contact us today for a free consultation.