Cerebral palsy is one of the most serious types of birth injury. Although a number of factors can lead to cerebral palsy, insufficient oxygen during labor and delivery is the most prominent. The important question, however, is why a baby didn’t get enough oxygen at birth.
Your Doctor’s Action (or Inaction) Can Lead to a Serious Birth Injury
Few injuries are more devastating than the ones caused by doctors - professionals meant to provide help and healing. Sadly, negligent doctors, nurses, and hospitals are responsible for many birth injuries.
Some common forms of negligence in the delivery room are:
- Failing to properly read the child’s heartbeat during labor
- Improper use of vacuum extractors or forceps
- Failing to identify a prolapsed umbilical cord
- Overlooking the need for an emergency c-section
Not all instances of cerebral palsy are the result of medical negligence in the delivery room; some are caused by malpractice before the mother gives birth. If your doctor neglects to diagnose and treat pregnancy-induced hypertension (PIH), your baby could suffer serious health complications as a result – including cerebral palsy.
Types of Cerebral Palsy
There are many types of cerebral palsy; three of the most common are spastic cerebral palsy, ataxic cerebral palsy, and athetoid cerebral palsy:
- Spastic cerebral palsy is the most frequent type of cerebral palsy; roughly 80% of individuals with cerebral palsy have this kind. Spastic cerebral palsy is characterized by tightness in certain muscle groups, which often makes movement difficult.
- Ataxic cerebral palsy accounts for about 10% of cerebral palsy cases. Unlike spastic cerebral palsy, ataxic cerebral palsy disrupts a person’s sense of balance and depth perception. It can affect coordinated muscle movements as well.
- Athetoid cerebral palsy affects roughly 10% of people with cerebral palsy. Involuntary muscle movement and slurred speech characterize this type, along with weakened muscle tone, difficulty swallowing and difficulty maintaining posture (sitting up straight).
You Can Hold Doctors Responsible for Medical Negligence
In some cases, the exact cause of cerebral palsy is unknown. However, if your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy or you are concerned that he / she has this condition, it is imperative that you determine the cause and seek compensation if you can.
The best way to understand your legal rights and options is to speak with an experienced legal professional, such as the Chicago cerebral palsy attorneys at Beam Legal Team. We’ve been helping families for more than 30 years. Talking to a lawyer for your first case evaluation is free, so get in touch with us now to schedule your meeting.