Cerebral Palsy is caused by brain damage, and usually occurs during pregnancy, delivery or childhood. More specifically, cerebral palsy is a disorder of muscle, movement, or posture that is caused by damage to the immature, developing brain.
Symptoms and signs will appear during infancy or preschool years. Generally, cerebral palsy causes impaired movement and is associated with abnormal reflexes, rigidity or floppiness of the limbs and trunk, involuntary movements, abnormal posture, unsteady walking, or a combination of these symptoms.
Individuals with cerebral palsy may have issues swallowing and often have eye muscle imbalance, in which the eyes do not focus on the same object. People with cerebral palsy may suffer a reduced range of motion at various joints due to muscle stiffness.
Cerebral palsy’s effect on one’s functional abilities varies greatly. Some affected people are able to walk, while others cannot. Some show normal or near-normal intellectual capacity, but others may have intellectual disabilities. Blindness, epilepsy, or deafness also may be present.
When a child’s brain goes through such damage, messages between the brain and the body can be blocked, causing any of the following symptoms:
- Problems with Walking
- Involuntary Movement
- Muscle Spasm or Tightness
- Speech, Hearing or Sight Impairment
- Unusual Awareness and Sensation
Los Angeles Cerebral Palsy Attorneys from The Barnes Firm
Medical malpractice resulting in CP can happen during fetal development or delivery as well as shortly after birth. Even a simple administrative error can prevent a provider from being aware of a pre-existing medical condition, or the medical team may fail to detect fetal distress during a delivery. Sadly, both scenarios could result in birth injuries and brain damage to a newborn.
Further, about 20% of all Cerebral Palsy cases result from brain damage that is incurred during the birth process. Consequently, the time a mother spends in the delivery room represents a period in which even slight errors can have a lifelong impact on the wellness and health of your baby.
For instance, under normal circumstances, the mother’s placenta will continue to deliver oxygen to the baby until he or she is capable of breathing independently outside of the womb. Conversely, any condition that restricts this oxygen supply during birthing can cause neurological damage, which may present as a CP disorder during the first few years of a child’s life.
At The Barnes Firm, we have a law firm of experienced Los Angeles cerebral palsy attorneys. Our lawyers have helped countless children and their families receive verdicts and settlements after our team filed a medical malpractice claim. If you or a loved one have any questions about cerebral palsy or about the legal process, call our law firm of Los Angeles cerebral palsy attorneys anytime, day or night. The Barnes Firm is also your source for:
Types of Cerebral Palsy
Any sort of damage to a young brain may cause cerebral palsy. Such damage can be genetic or may be the result of severe birth injury.
If doctors fail to inform the parents of a potential complication during pregnancy, this can be judged as medical malpractice. Doctors are also responsible for caring for both the mother and her child. Allowing labor to go on too long, for instance, can be highly dangerous. In some cases, this can even cut off oxygen flow to the baby as discussed above, resulting in damaged brain tissue. Call your Los Angeles cerebral palsy attorneys to learn more about malpractice laws and how they affect your rights.
There are four main types of Cerebral Palsy:
- Ataxic Cerebral Palsy – this very rare condition been linked to several birthing accidents. Ataxic Cerebral Palsy affects a child’s coordination and balance. Children with Ataxic CP may have a wide step or be off-balance when they’re walking. Agility and quick movements can be difficult.
- Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy (Athetoid) – this causes uncontrollable movements of the arms, hands, feet, or legs. In some cases, Dyskinetic CP can affect a child’s tongue or facial muscles. Children with Dyskinetic CP often experience difficulty speaking.
- Spastic Cerebral Palsy – this condition causes muscles to stiffen, making otherwise simple tasks such as walking or handling small objects a challenge. A few types of Spastic CP exist: diplegia (primarily affecting the legs), hemiplegia (affecting only one side of the body), and quadriplegia (affecting all four limbs, the torso, and face).
- Mixed Type Cerebral Palsy – as the name implies, this condition is a combination of two or more kinds of cerebral palsy. The most common combination is Dyskinetic CP and Spastic CP. Other combinations are possible, depending on which parts of the brain suffered the injury.
If you believe or suspect your child has suffered a birth injury such as cerebral palsy, call an experienced CP lawyer or contact us. The Los Angeles cerebral palsy attorneys at The Barnes Firm are here to help answer your questions and guide you through the legal process.
Reach the lawyers at The Barnes Firm at (800) 800-0000.