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March 19 marks the one-year anniversary of a historic achievement by Alex Roca Campillo, a Spanish runner with cerebral palsy and reduced mobility. On that date in 2023, he completed the Barcelona Marathon, becoming the first person with his level of disability (76% paralysis) to do so. Crossing the finish line in 5 hours, 50 minutes, and 21 seconds, Roca’s accomplishment became a source of inspiration for many, drawing over 14 million views on a video of his final moments in the race.

Roca’s marathon run serves as a message of empowerment and resilience, especially for families with disabled children. He dedicated the accomplishment to his grandfather, who taught him how to walk. The athlete, who communicates through sign language, challenged societal perceptions about disability, saying, “Your body does not define your capacity. If you have willpower and resilience, you can achieve a lot.” His own accomplishment was the culmination of a whole year of hard work with a personal trainer, physiotherapist, and psychological preparation.

The Effects of Cerebral Palsy

Roca was diagnosed with herpetic viral encephalitis (cerebral herpes) at the age of six months, which then developed into cerebral palsy. He was expected to die or only to live in a vegetative state.

Cerebral palsy (CP) is a group of developmental disorders that are usually diagnosed during early childhood, caused by damage to the developing brain during infancy, at delivery, or in utero. It primarily affects areas of the brain controlling body movement and posture, often resulting in lack of muscle coordination, stiff or rigid muscles, involuntary movements, vision and hearing problems, speech and cognitive impairments. Approximately 1 in 345 children in the United States are diagnosed with CP, making it the most common childhood motor disability according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The effects of cerebral palsy are wide-ranging and can impact an individual throughout their lifetime. Many require supportive equipment like walkers, wheelchairs, or leg braces. Daily activities like bathing, dressing, and eating often require assistance. And medical costs for therapy, medications, and caregiving can be substantial.

How Beam Legal Team Can Help

In many cases, cerebral palsy can be caused by medical negligence or malpractice surrounding pregnancy, labor, and delivery. Negligent prenatal care preventing proper treatment of maternal infections, preeclampsia, or other conditions puts babies at risk. Oxygen deprivation during birth (asphyxia) and trauma to the baby’s head, such as from forceps used to assist delivery, can also inflict brain damage leading to cerebral palsy. Finally, delayed cesarean deliveries, improper heart rate monitoring errors, or failure to promptly treat complications are other frequent causes. When medical mistakes result in this lifelong condition, families may have grounds to seek compensation.

While individuals affected by CP can lead full lives, as Alex Roca’s achievement demonstrates, it often requires a great deal of hard work, time, and specialized treatment.

Beam Legal Team can help alleviate the financial burdens associated with managing the long-term needs of a child with CP. We possess a deep understanding of the medical and legal nuances involved in cerebral palsy cases, and can help gather evidence, consult medical experts, and build a compelling case that demonstrates how deviations from standard medical practices led to your child’s condition. But our expertise extends beyond proving the cause of cerebral palsy. We also quantify the full extent of damages for you—covering medical expenses, ongoing care costs, therapy, adaptive equipment, and even pain and suffering.

Beam Legal Team Helps Families Get Compensation

Don’t let a disability—or the healthcare provider who caused it—stand in the way of your child’s happiness. The Chicago cerebral palsy lawyers at Beam Legal Team have helped hundreds of families secure compensation to care for their children with cerebral palsy.  We know the challenges that families affected by CP face and are dedicated to supporting you with compassion throughout the complicated legal process.

Contact Beam Legal Team today to schedule a free consultation, and let us fight for your child’s needs.