The factors and circumstances that can cause unnecessary injury to a newborn during the labor-and-delivery process are incredibly complex. Navigating these circumstances to determine whether a child’s cerebral palsy could and should have been avoided with proper medical care and treatment requires input not only from experienced lawyers, but also from medical experts of the highest quality. You can rely on our experience and experts to accurately interpret and evaluate your child’s medical care to determine whether your child’s condition could have been prevented – and, if so, the very best way to prove it in court.
Cerebral Palsy – Symptoms And Types
A child is most commonly diagnosed with cerebral palsy within the first two years of age. Oftentimes, however, a child’s labor and delivery and perinatal medical records contain clear signals of the diagnosis even before it is made. A child suffering from cerebral palsy will begin to demonstrate signs and symptoms of the condition, including a failure to reach early developmental milestones, delays in physical development and muscle coordination, delays in crawling or walking, stiff or tight muscles, walking on toes, and/or floppy muscle tone. Other neurologic systems can be negatively impacted by the condition, including bowel and bladder function, breathing, speech, eating, swallowing, learning, vision and hearing. Negligent delivery techniques can result in any of the three known types of cerebral palsy – spastic, athetoid and ataxic.
If your child suffers from cerebral palsy caused by medical malpractice, you will be entitled to compensation for past and future medical expenses, future lost wages, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life.
Cerebral Palsy – Oxygen Deprivation During Labor And Delivery
During the labor-and-delivery process, physicians, midwives and obstetrical nurses must adhere to well-recognized and available techniques to closely monitor the health of the unborn child. These techniques have been developed over decades of obstetrical practice following a number of high-level medical studies. Appropriate monitoring during labor and delivery is an important and fundamental aspect of sound obstetrical medical practice, and any sign of fetal distress can be a clue that the unborn child is suffering from conditions such as hypoxia (inadequate oxygen supply) or anoxia (total lack of oxygen). Physicians, midwives and obstetrical nurses have at their disposal many tools to diagnose fetal distress in a timely fashion – before a child suffers injury. Whether it’s through the use of ultrasound, bio-physical profiles, stress tests, non-stress tests or fetal monitoring strips during labor, applicable standards of medical care require physicians to appreciate and respond quickly to any evidence of fetal distress, including by ordering emergency or STAT C-section delivery to prevent the unborn child from suffering brain injury or other permanent injury.
Cerebral Palsy – Early Signs
A child suffering from cerebral palsy as a result of injury during labor and delivery can demonstrate early signs of the condition in many different ways. A common sign that a newborn has suffered oxygen deprivation and injury is seizures which present themselves in the form of body shaking, blank stares, interruptions in normal breathing patters, inability to sleep, head nodding, uncontrolled eyelid blinking, a loud pitched cry, tightening of an arm or leg, lip smacking, or shivering.
Children who suffer cerebral palsy injuries face serious consequences, including the need for lifelong medical interventions, surgeries, home health care, physical and occupational therapy, etc. The costs associated with this medical care can be daunting. If your child has suffered a birth injury resulting from cerebral palsy, or if you have a question that has not been answered appropriately by your medical providers, call Porter Nordby Howe LLP now at 888-477-7731, or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.