All You Need to Know About Cerebral Palsy

You want the best possible life for your child. Hearing that they are being diagnosed with something as serious as cerebral palsy can be heartbreaking as you may not know what it is, how it affects your child, what changes it will have on your child’s life, and what to expect moving forward.

Much of the fear associated with a cerebral palsy comes with the fact that people don’t know much about it. They feel as though their child cannot live a normal life with it. While there are some difficulties they will face, you should know what CP is, how it can impact your child, and what options you have should the condition be caused by negligence.

Below, we have compiled much of the information you’ll need regarding cerebral palsy. If your child is diagnosed, it is best to understand it fully so you know how to cope and how to help your child live as best as they can with the condition.

What Is CP?

First you should know, cerebral palsy is one of the more serious birth injuries that your child can sustain and occurs in roughly one out of every 323 children according to the CDC. It is something that can impact your child as they get older, but the prevalence and severity of the condition often varies.

As for what it is, this is a condition that impacts children in their early childhood and infancy. It is an overall group of neurological problems that children face and may impact their abilities throughout their life. Some children are not even properly diagnosed until they are months or years old.

As with many birth injuries, cerebral palsy can be difficult for children to overcome. However, parents should recognize the condition, as well as how it impacts the child to properly get the medical attention you need.

Is There One True Cause of CP?

Because cerebral palsy is often considered a birth injury, it is brought about in many lawsuits over time. As with any civil lawsuit to pursue compensation, it is imperative to show causation—which in this case can be whatever action caused the child to develop CP during pregnancy or delivery.

It’s important to recognize that cerebral palsy stems from an issue within the brain and is often the result of an injury to the motor-control central of the brain. This makes it so there are multiple potential causes of cerebral palsy and can complicate matters when proving negligence in a court.

However, this doesn’t make it impossible as one of the most common causes of cerebral palsy is lack of oxygen to the baby’s brain. This is something that can be detected during the pregnancy and/or labor, but often goes missed should the doctor be negligent.

Whether the mother and baby are not receiving proper monitoring during pregnancy or the doctor delays labor for a long period of time, there are many situations that can lead to oxygen deprivation.

And while there are many types of causes for cerebral palsy, it is absolutely imperative for parents to recognize those that are associated with a doctor’s actions. By knowing what actions the doctor can do to cause serious harm, you can better recognize the steps you may be able to take to pursue compensation on behalf of your child.

Recap: 11 Facts About CP You Should Know

  1. Cerebral palsy is diagnosed as multiple disorders impacting your child’s physical abilities, including movement, coordination, posture, balance, and more.
  2. Cerebral palsy is considered the most common disability for motor function in childhood, impacting 1 in 323 children. This is according to the Autism and Development Disabilities Monitoring Network of the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  3. Boys are more commonly affected with cerebral palsy than girls are, and there are certain demographics that more commonly suffer from the condition.
  4. There are multiple types of cerebral palsy, and a majority of the children who suffer from the condition end up with a specific type (spastic CP). This is a condition that results in muscle stiffness and can impact mobility.
  5. More than 50% of the children who suffer from cerebral palsy—despite experiencing physical disabilities—are able to walk on their own, independent of help from another party.
  6. Most of those who end up with cerebral palsy experience some sort of damage to the brain during pregnancy or during delivery. There are certain factors that can increase the risk of CP, such as the baby being too small, premature, having twins, when a mother has an infection during pregnancy, or other complications are present during labor.
  7. Many of the children who suffer from cerebral palsy also experience some other kind of condition—or a co-occurring condition. One in 10 of the children with CP may suffer from autism spectrum disorder, while 4 in 10 may suffer from epilepsy.
  8. When trying to narrow down the cause of CP, it can be a difficult task. There is no one true cause and it often results because of an injury to the baby’s brain. Whether this is caused by a maternal or genetic issue or the negligent actions of a doctor must be determined.
  9. There are some situations where children suffer from cerebral palsy post-birth. This is acquired CP and often occurs as a result of infection or serious head injury after the 28 days following delivery.
  10. While many babies suffer from cerebral palsy at birth, it is often not until the first or second year of the baby’s life that the condition is properly diagnosed. The symptoms can remain mild until your child reaches a few years old.
  11. Cerebral palsy is not a condition that puts a halt on life. There are treatment options, services, and support that allow those who develop CP to live healthy and active lives. While severity can play a role in this, many situations allow for the child to move forward in a positive manner.

What You Can Do Moving Forward

It can be devastating for a parent to hear that their child is suffering from a serious condition. You may be lost and confused. But through this all, you must recognize that there may have been negligence involved in causing your child harm and you have options to protect the rights of your family.

If a doctor’s actions resulted in the brain injury your child suffered, you may be able to file a birth injury (medical malpractice) claim against the responsible party to hold them fully accountable for their actions and to pursue the compensation you’ll need to help your child with all resources he or she will need moving forward.

At Beam Legal Team, we make families a priority and work hard to obtain the compensation and justice you need moving forward. You can count on us to determine negligence, build a strong case based on supporting evidence, and do whatever possible to reach the outcome you deserve.

Trust in our Chicago birth injury lawyers to provide your entire family with the care and respect you deserve. This isn’t an easy situation to endure and the thought of legal action can be dauting. We’ll take on the burdens for you so you can focus on your family and what matters most. Meanwhile, we’ll work for justice.

Call our firm today at (866) 766-3806 and speak with a professional advocated about the options available to you now and in the future. We’re ready to help.

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