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Cerebral Palsy Lawyers

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Cerebral palsy is a disorder that affects the brain, causing a variety of symptoms. While this condition can be inherited, it also can occur during the birthing process if a mistake is made by medical professionals. Below is an overview of cerebral palsy and what to do if your child suffered a brain injury during childbirth that caused this condition.

What Is Cerebral Palsy?

Cerebral palsy is a term used to describe a group of medical conditions that cause similar symptoms. There are three main types of cerebral palsy including:

  • Spastic Cerebral Palsy

This form of the condition causes children to have trouble moving their arms and legs. It is also associated with stiffness of the limbs.

  • Ataxic Cerebral Palsy

Ataxic cerebral palsy affects the child’s balance, ability to walk and depth perception.

  • Athetoid Cerebral Palsy

This type of cerebral palsy causes abnormal movements of the arms and legs, which are often uncontrollable.

The Causes Of Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy can occur if there is a genetic predisposition for the condition. It can also occur if a baby is deprived of oxygen during the process of childbirth. Other things that have been linked to cerebral palsy include babies being dropped after birth, injured with forceps and prolonged labor that leads to oxygen deprivation. Some babies develop cerebral palsy due to untreated infections after birth, untreated jaundice, delayed meningitis treatment and failure to discover a prolapsed umbilical cord. In these instances, medical professionals are directly responsible for the child’s injuries and compensation may be sought through a medical malpractice lawsuit.

What Are The Symptoms Of Cerebral Palsy?

Children that have cerebral palsy exhibit similar symptoms, depending on the type of cerebral palsy the child suffers from. According to the Center For Disease Control or CDC, the most common symptoms of this condition include:

  • Abnormal Reflexes
  • Spastic Muscle Tone
  • Difficulty Walking
  • Walking On The Toes
  • Trouble Tying Shoes
  • Abnormal Facial Movements
  • Trouble Chewing And Swallowing
  • Dragging One Leg While Walking

Studies have shown that spastic cerebral palsy is the most common form of the condition, accounting for 70 percent of all children diagnosed with the condition.

Do You Have A Medical Malpractice Claim?

If your child suffers from cerebral palsy, it is important to speak with a personal injury lawyer to determine if you have a case. You must be able to prove your child’s injuries were caused by negligence on the part of the nurses, doctors or hospital where your child was born. An experienced cerebral palsy lawyer can examine the events surrounding your child’s birth and help you prove how the injuries occurred.

Types Of Damages

When you have a child with special medical needs, you will most likely face a lifetime of high medical bills and long term care costs. If you file a medical malpractice case and are successful, you may be able to obtain damages such as:

  • Hospital Costs
  • Doctor Fees
  • Transportation Costs To Medical Facilities
  • Cost Of Speech Therapy
  • Occupational Therapy Fees
  • Physical Therapy Costs
  • Mental Health Counseling
  • Emotional Distress
  • Pain And Suffering
  • Home Health Costs
  • Cost Of Medical Devices

How A Cerebral Palsy Lawyer Can Help

If your child suffered a birth injury, it may benefit you to seek the advice of a personal injury lawyer. Your lawyer can help your case by:

  • Hiring Investigators
  • Obtaining Medical Records
  • Speaking With Medical Experts
  • Filing Court Documents
  • Speak With Insurance Companies
  • Calculate Future Cost Of Medical Care
  • Represent You In Court

Medical malpractice lawsuits are very complex and at times, difficult to prove. This is especially true with cerebral palsy because it can be an inherited condition, as well as the result of a birth injury. For this reason, you must have a lawyer to guide you through the process, so that your child has the resources needed to be well cared for throughout his or her lifetime.

Since there is a statute of limitations on medical malpractice claims, it is important to see a lawyer as soon as possible. Most birth injury cases have a 2 and 1/2 year statute of limitations in New York. However, contributing factors may alter this time frame. Your lawyer will know the laws pertaining to your case and submit court documents within the appropriate time frame, so that you do not lose the right to obtain compensation for your child’s injuries.

Additional Resources

Your lawyer may also help you obtain additional resources needed for raising a child with cerebral palsy. Some of these resources include:

  • Social Security Benefits
  • Handicap Parking Permits
  • Medical Assistance
  • Transportation Assistance
  • Support Groups
  • Respite Care

Cerebral palsy is a medical condition, not a disease and there is no cure. Children who suffer from it require long term care in most instances. Certain types of therapy have been found to help children cope with their condition as they grow. It is important to have the financial resources your child needs, so they have the best chance at a living up to their full potential.

If your child suffers from cerebral palsy and you feel it may be due to a birth injury, contact a personal injury lawyer at once. During an initial meeting, your lawyer will study your case and let you know if you have a valid medical malpractice case. If so, your lawyer will guide you through the claims process and a lawsuit if necessary. Many personal injury cases are settled out-of-court, without a lengthy trial. Having an experienced cerebral palsy lawyer on your side will increase your chances of obtaining a fair settlement for your child’s birth injury.

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