In the majority of diagnoses, cerebral palsy symptoms may be present within the first month of the child’s life. Children with different cerebral palsy types may have problems controlling their movements. Maintaining balance, coordination, and posture is difficult. Some cerebral palsy patients may experience bone weakness and deformity with crippling consequences. Depending on the amount of brain damage, a child may have trouble hearing, seeing, speaking, eating, digesting, and breathing. In about half of all cases, CP children also experience delayed or dysfunctional cognitive development. Read about cerebral palsy causes.
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What Is Cerebral Palsy?
Cerebral palsy (CP) is a form of brain damage that can result from a medical professional’s negligence during labor and delivery. Cerebral palsy is actually a broad term for a group of motor and neurologic conditions that cause a wide range of health problems for children. Most cases that spark medical negligence lawsuits occur as a result of physical head trauma or lack of oxygen to the brain.
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Recognizing Cerebral Palsy
An experienced birth injury attorney will discuss all of the important details with you during your free consultation, including cerebral palsy causes, diagnosis, and symptoms. If your child was diagnosed with CP or you are concerned your baby might be affected, your attorney can inform you of your legal rights and connect you with objective medical experts who can give you straight answers about your child’s condition.
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Caring for a Child with Cerebral Palsy
If your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy, he or she faces a challenging road ahead. CP is a chronic diagnosis, and most children will require the use of adaptive living equipment, such as walkers, braces, or wheelchairs. Physical therapy, special education, and regular medical appointments become part of everyday living.
The measures taken to maximize a cerebral palsy child’s quality of life put an immense amount of financial stress on parents of affected children. Lifetime care can exceed hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical expenses, forcing many families into deep debt. When you hire an experienced cerebral palsy attorney, he or she will put all of the resources available to work to investigate your claim of medical negligence, assess how much your claim is worth, and seek the maximum recovery possible. Remember that your legal battle is about more than the lifetime cost of caring for your child’s birth injury.
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Is There a Cure for Cerebral Palsy?
There is no cure for cerebral palsy, but treatments can provide significant increases in muscle control and range of motion. In addition, many cerebral palsy cases are preventable, meaning it may be possible to drastically reduce the number of children affected by this birth injury-related condition.
Modern cerebral palsy treatments include medications and therapies that can reduce symptoms, lessen chronic pains, and offer a better quality of life.
No Cure Exists for Cerebral Palsy, but Treatment Is Key in Improving Quality of Life
There is no cure for cerebral palsy. There is also no single treatment that will make cerebral palsy symptoms disappear and allow those born with the condition to have normal muscle control and movement. However, there are a number of treatment options that can work together to help improve the lives of children and adults living with cerebral palsy.
Your child’s treatment team will work with you to put a plan in place to maximize your child’s abilities and help them reach their full potential. They will also address any associated conditions, including epilepsy, intellectual disabilities, and deafness.
The treatment options for your child will depend on their individual symptoms, but some of the most common treatments include:
- Physical and occupational therapy
- Speech therapy
- Medications for relaxing muscle spasms, managing pain, and controlling seizures
- Braces and orthotic devices
- Surgery to release tight muscles
- Mobility aids including wheelchairs, gait trainers, and rolling walkers
- Communication aids including tablets, voice synthesizers, and computers
- Goals of Cerebral Palsy Treatment
While cerebral palsy itself is not progressive, complications may be. For the best results from therapy and other treatments, it is imperative to begin as soon as possible. This requires an early diagnosis and a knowledgeable team of medical professionals.
In general, the younger the child is when cerebral palsy treatment begins, the better chance they have of overcoming challenges posed by their physical, cognitive, or speech disabilities. Occupational therapy can often help children learn new ways to accomplish daily activities such as feeding themselves or using the bathroom on their own that are difficult because of their impairments.
In many cases, treatment and therapy can significantly improve functioning in children with cerebral palsy. Many can go on to live independently or require less assistance.
Is Cerebral Palsy a Type of Cognitive Issue Caused by a Birth Injury?
Cerebral palsy is not a type of cognitive issue caused by a birth injury, although mental impairments often co-occur. It is a motor and movement disorder caused by a perinatal injury to certain areas of the brain. In addition to cognitive issues, children with cerebral palsy may also have epilepsy, learning disabilities, autism, and behavioral concerns. These are co-occurring conditions in addition to the challenges posed by their physical symptoms of cerebral palsy.
Cerebral Palsy Is the Most Common Motor Disability in Children
Cerebral palsy is a brain injury that occurs when certain parts of the brain do not get enough blood and/or oxygen during labor and delivery. Almost any type of complication that could cause this can lead to cerebral palsy, including:
- Long and difficult births resulting in head trauma to the baby
- Maternal infections
- Fetal stroke
- Blood clotting problems in the baby
- Very low blood pressure in the mother
- A torn uterus
- Placental abruption
- Nuchal cord or other problems with the umbilical cord
The symptoms of cerebral palsy occur when one of these complications causes damage to the brain’s white matter that serves as the body’s motor control center. There are several areas of white matter that work together to provide motor control, movement, coordination, and balance. The child may have a different type of cerebral palsy depending on the specific area affected.
Children with cerebral palsy can have symptoms that vary widely from easily manageable with medication and therapy to life-limiting issues that can interfere with the quality of life. Some children walk without support, while others require around-the-clock assistance and care.
Co-occurring Conditions Are Common with Cerebral Palsy
When a birth injury affects the motor control centers of the brain and causes cerebral palsy, the traumatic brain injury often affects more than just that specific area of white matter. This can lead to epilepsy, a cognitive disability, or other developmental concerns.
Cerebral palsy is not the cause of these co-occurring conditions, but they stem from the same birth injury and injuries to other areas of the brain. While every case is different, children who have the most severe types of cerebral palsy and who have the most motor limitations may also have the greatest risk of cognitive disabilities.
In many cases, the brain injuries that cause cerebral palsy, cognitive delays, and other co-occurring conditions are preventable. If your child has cerebral palsy, with or without a cognitive disability, you may be eligible to take legal action against the medical professional that delivered them or the hospital where they were born.
A doctor can cause or fail to prevent cerebral palsy and other perinatal brain injuries by:
- Failing to monitor mother and baby during pregnancy, labor, and delivery adequately
- Failure to diagnose medical concerns or possible complications in mother or infant
- Failure to order a cesarean section (C-section) when risks of vaginal delivery were too high
- Failure to provide an acceptable standard of care
- Other careless or negligent actions
To learn if you may have a valid birth injury case, you should discuss your case with a medical malpractice attorney in your state or the state where your child was born. Each state sets its own laws, and only an attorney who regularly handles these cases in your state will know how to navigate the process, prove your case, and meet all applicable deadlines.
Most medical malpractice lawyers offer free case reviews and consultations, so you can learn if you have a case at no cost to you. They also take on this type of case based on contingency, meaning your family pays no out-of-pocket costs. The attorney does not get paid unless you get a settlement or court award.
Some recoverable damages in a birth injury medical malpractice case may include:
- Medical expenses
- Ongoing and future care costs
- Physical, occupational, speech, and other therapies
- Mobility and assistive equipment
- Out-of-pocket expenses related to their treatment and care
- Pain and suffering damages
- Mental anguish
- How Preventable Is Cerebral Palsy?
Cerebral palsy is preventable, although not always. In some cases, it occurs because of issues within the developing brain that doctors cannot predict or prevent. However, it also frequently develops because of a medical error, preventable birth injury, or medical negligence.
Many Cases of Cerebral Palsy Are Preventable
There are many causes of the types of brain injuries that lead to cerebral palsy. Cerebral palsy is preventable when the causes for the condition are:
- Maternal infections that can spread to the baby
- Infections in the womb or after birth that cause inflammation in the brain
- Problems with the placenta or other conditions that limit the blood supply to the baby’s brain before or during delivery
- Difficult labor and delivery that results in the baby not getting enough oxygen
- Traumatic brain injury during birth, often because of forceps or vacuum extraction
In many of these cases, close monitoring by a doctor during pregnancy, labor, and birth would offer an opportunity to take action and prevent permanent brain damage to the baby. There are interventions available for many of these causes, and other causes are easy to avoid if your doctor provides an acceptable standard of care.
Diagnosis and Treatment of Cerebral Palsy
If your child does experience a birth injury or there is another reason to believe they may have the condition, you can watch for the signs and symptoms of cerebral palsy from a young age. Getting an early diagnosis and treatment may help improve the outcome and increase the quality of life in some children.
According to the Cerebral Palsy Alliance Research Foundation, some of the symptoms to watch for include:
- Signs of Cerebral Palsy in Babies
- Low muscle tone
- Too floppy or too stiff
- Muscle spasms
- Unable to hold his head up on his own when other babies the same age can
- Cannot lift head while lying on his stomach
- Poor muscle control and reflexes
- Poor posture or inability to sit unassisted after six months of age
- Significant delays in hitting developmental milestones
- Difficulties related to feeding or swallowing
- Noted preference for one side of the body
- Signs of Cerebral Palsy in Toddlers
- Not able to pull up
- Not walking by 12 to 18 months
- Walking but having trouble with gait or controlled movement
- Not speaking simple sentences by 24 months
If you observe signs of cerebral palsy in your child, if they experience uncontrolled muscle movements, if they have seizures, or if they experience developmental delays or fail to meet normal developmental milestones, you should discuss your concerns with their doctor. Getting early treatment and support can help prevent some complications, including painful contractures and cognitive damage related to uncontrolled seizures.
How to Diagnose Cerebral Palsy
Doctors generally diagnose cerebral palsy during the first two years of a child’s life. When there are concerns about the child’s movement or motor delays, a doctor will evaluate the child and may order testing. In some cases, cerebral palsy is a diagnosis of exclusion, meaning the doctor will rule out other causes before definitively diagnosing cerebral palsy.
In some cases, doctors may suspect cerebral palsy or a related condition earlier because the child has co-occurring conditions such as epilepsy or vision or hearing problems. The cerebral palsy evaluation will also need to look at these concerns as well as the possibility of intellectual delays, speech and eating concerns, and behavioral problems.
Raising Initial Concerns About the Possibility of Cerebral Palsy
Routine screenings with a child’s doctor play a key role in recognizing a problem with a child’s motor development and getting a cerebral palsy diagnosis. Getting a diagnosis as early as possible allows for early intervention and therapy to begin quickly. This early diagnosis may prevent the child’s impairments from having a substantial impact on their education or social development.
Whether or not there are known risk factors for cerebral palsy, all babies should undergo regular developmental monitoring, sometimes called surveillance, by their pediatrician. This surveillance tracks:
- The child’s growth and size
- Developmental milestones
- Any individual concerns based on previous surveillance or the child’s medical history
If there are any significant concerns about the child’s development or motor skills during one of these evaluations, the doctor should order additional screening tests. These tests will address specific concerns, determining if there is a reason to be concerned about the child’s motor development, ability to hit developmental milestones, or other issues.
If this screening does uncover a cause for concern, the doctor should refer the child for additional evaluations and testing, often from a specialist.
Understanding Developmental Evaluation Testing Used for a Cerebral Palsy Diagnosis
In most cases, doctors catch signs of cerebral palsy before the child reaches age two. However, it is not always an easy condition to diagnose, especially in mild cases. The patient’s age may play a role in how a primary care pediatrician or specialist evaluates the child and the tests they use to diagnose cerebral palsy.
While some pediatricians conduct developmental evaluations to diagnose cerebral palsy on their own, many refer the child to a specialist. These specialists may include:
- Developmental pediatricians
- Pediatric neurologists
- Pediatric physiatrists
- Pediatric rehabilitation specialists
These medical professionals will further evaluate the child’s motor development and rule out a number of causes for similar symptoms. They will conduct specific tests to determine the child’s impairments. In addition, they will run medical tests to understand if and where there is damage to the brain and other potential causes of brain damage. Medical testing may include:
- Computed tomography (CT)
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Electroencephalogram (EEG)
- Genetic testing
- Metabolic testing
Depending on what they discover, this could confirm a cerebral palsy diagnosis or show that a genetic or metabolic condition caused the symptoms the child experiences. The result of these tests can also confirm where the brain damage occurred and help the doctors put a plan in place to address the child’s specific needs.
Early intervention and therapies can begin almost immediately. They will address the child’s individual needs as documented during screening and evaluation.
A Missed Cerebral Palsy Diagnosis May Support a Birth Injury Case
Cerebral palsy can support a medical malpractice case in several ways. If your child’s doctor or other medical care provider caused or failed to prevent their brain injury, or if they missed your child’s diagnosis, you may be eligible to pursue compensation. This compensation could cover medical bills, ongoing care costs, medical equipment, pain and suffering, and more.
A birth injury lawyer can evaluate your case for free and explain your rights based on the facts of your case. They will also help you build a case for compensation if you qualify. They may be able to negotiate an out-of-court settlement or represent you at trial.
Your cerebral palsy attorney can also explain how long you have to take legal action based on the statute of limitations and other laws in your state.
What to Do if Your Child Shows Symptoms of Cerebral Palsy
It is common to wonder how a baby’s development compares to others their age. Some babies can say their first words before nine months of age, while others do not speak for more than a year. While variations in the time it takes for a baby to walk or talk are normal, if your child is consistently missing milestones, it could be a sign of a serious issue like cerebral palsy.
If you are looking for what to do if your child shows symptoms of cerebral palsy, a lawyer may be able to help. Call the Birth Injury Lawyers Group today at (800) 222-9529 to connect with a lawyer who can help you.
What to Look for if Your Child Has Cerebral Palsy
Knowing the developmental milestones your child is supposed to hit as they mature can help parents know what to expect. If your child has cerebral palsy, there will be early signs that your child may have physical, cognitive, or emotional difficulties.
If your child is under six months of age, symptoms of cerebral palsy may include:
- The child feeling ‘floppy’ (hypotonic) when you pick them up, indicating a lack of muscle tone
- The child feeling stiff (hypertonic) when you lift them up, indicating excessive muscle tone
- The child’s neck falling backward without support
- The child’s legs becoming stiff or performing a ‘scissor’ when lifted
- When held, the child seems to be overextending and flexing their arms as if they are pushing you away
If your child is over six months of age, symptoms of cerebral palsy may include being:
- Unable to roll over
- Unable to reach with both hands
- Unable to put their hands together
- Unable to put their hand near their mouth
Babies with cerebral palsy may have poor posture, slow reflexes, and have a noted preference for one side of their body. As the child continues to develop, you may notice that they:
- Be unable to stay visually focused for any length of time
- Vomit frequently
- Have difficulties picking their head up
- Have delays in crawling or crawl using only the arm and leg on one side
- Have trouble standing up by themselves
- Have communication problems
- Have difficulties walking
- Have difficulties eating
In older children, signs and symptoms of cerebral palsy may include:
- Poor coordination
- Speech difficulties
- Joint or bone deformities
- Hearing and vision deformities
- Inability to control their bladder or bowels (if of potty-training age).
Cerebral palsy is difficult to diagnose in newborns and infants. Doctors and parents may begin to suspect that a child has cerebral palsy when they fail to reach their developmental milestones. Your pediatrician can help advise you on what to do if your child shows symptoms of cerebral palsy, and your cerebral palsy lawyer can help you determine whether medical negligence played a role in your child’s diagnosis.
The Importance of Diagnosing Cerebral Palsy at an Early Age
If you believe that your child may be demonstrating signs and symptoms of cerebral palsy, you will want to receive a medical diagnosis as soon as possible. If the cerebral palsy was caused by medical error, you and your child might be entitled to compensation to help cover the cost of treatment, therapy, and other necessary interventions.
The statute of limitations for cases involving medical malpractice and birth injuries is different in every state. If the statute of limitations runs out, you may lose the opportunity to sue for damages related to your child. Call the Birth Injury Lawyers Group at (800) 222-9529 to be connected with a cerebral palsy attorney familiar with the statute of limitations in your state.
What Are the Treatment Options for Cerebral Palsy?
Treatment options for cerebral palsy are generally an individualized plan because the condition, which affects your ability to move and maintain balance and posture, has a variety of impacts.
In most cases, doctors prescribe a combination of several different strategies to combat the challenges associated with living with cerebral palsy. This may include addressing complications and co-occurring conditions, as well as any physical limitations caused by cerebral palsy. Medication, surgery, therapy, and early intervention strategies are just a few possible facets of a typical cerebral palsy treatment plan.
Medical Treatment Plan for Cerebral Palsy
There is no one standard course of treatment needed or effective for a child with cerebral palsy. Instead, doctors will need to determine the classification of the condition and how it will likely affect the child. They will need to consider co-occurring conditions and the impact of cerebral palsy on the child, including possible future complications.
Doctors, parents, and specialists will work together to develop a plan to address the child’s symptoms and improve their quality of life. Due to the nature of cerebral palsy, a child with the disorder must start their treatment plan as early as possible.
A typical cerebral palsy treatment plan may include:
- Early intervention
- Medication to control seizures, relax muscles, or limit pain
- Surgery to ease tight muscles
- Therapy to help loosen muscles and/or learn new skills
- Orthotic devices to correct anatomical concerns and keep joints in place
- Supportive treatments
- Therapy Is Key for Limiting Cerebral Palsy-Related Impairments
Therapy plays a key role in most cerebral palsy treatment plans. This may include a treatment plan that only contains physical therapy or features a combination of physical, occupational, and speech therapies. Some common types of therapies for children with cerebral palsy include:
Physical therapy is a key component of any cerebral palsy treatment plan. Physical therapy for cerebral palsy uses different methods, such as massages, heat treatment, and exercise instead of drugs or surgery. A physical therapist will design exercises and activities to address a patient’s individual needs. These activities may include:
- Building muscle strength
- Increasing balance
- Improving motor skills
- Preventing contractures
- Learning to walk
- Learning to use a wheelchair, motorized wheelchair, canes, or walker
Physical therapists may also prescribe medical equipment to help improve mobility, including orthotic devices such as leg braces and gait trainers.
Occupational therapy can help those with cerebral palsy master self-care, daily living activities, and other day-to-day tasks. Occupational therapy encourages rehabilitation through everyday activities required in daily life. When a child’s condition prevents them from managing tasks, their occupational therapist will work to help them find a new way to reach the same goal within their abilities.
Speech therapy addresses a child’s ability to speak and use language to communicate. It also works to help a child overcome problems with eating and swallowing. Speech therapists may also help children learn to use alternative communication methods if they cannot control the muscles of their mouth and tongue.
Medical Equipment and Assistive Devices for Children with Cerebral Palsy
Prescribed medical equipment and assistive devices can help those with cerebral palsy overcome symptoms and complications. These types of equipment and devices can help children with cerebral palsy lead an easier, less painful life. Your child’s doctors or therapists may prescribe one or all of the tools listed below, depending on your child’s individual needs. Some of these devices may help your child build independence and overcome challenges associated with daily living activities.
Some common types of medical equipment and assistive devices used by children, teens, and adults with cerebral palsy include:
- Orthotic devices to support mobility, often used in conjunction with wheelchairs, rolling walkers, gait trainers, and scooters
- Braces and splints to improve muscle contractures and function
- Orthotics to ensure the proper positioning of a joint
- Braces, wedges, and other devices to provide support while sitting
- Vision aids, eye surgery, and other treatment for vision concerns
- Hearing aids and other equipment for children who suffer hearing loss
- Computers and voice synthesizers for those who cannot talk or otherwise struggle to communicate
What Are the Daily Personal Care Needs of a Child with Cerebral Palsy?
The daily personal care needs of a child with cerebral palsy can be challenging. There are five basic categories of personal care needs:
- Personal hygiene, including bathing and oral care
- Dressing oneself
- Feeding oneself
- Using the restroom
- Transferring from lying down or sitting to standing
Often, a parent or caregiver must help a child with cerebral palsy with one, two, or all these daily personal needs depending on the severity of their condition and age.
How to Help Children with Cerebral Palsy Face Everyday Challenges
Here are some facts and tips to help children through daily personal care needs.
One-third of children with cerebral palsy are unable to walk. Others can walk using assistive devices. It can be frustrating for children with cerebral palsy who must rely on others to carry them from bed to chair. As children get older, carrying them becomes impractical and unsafe. It also keeps them from becoming more independent.
Fortunately, some wheelchairs and scooters are specially designed for children to match their height, weight, posture, and support needs with maximum comfort. Depending on the child, parents can choose from several mobility options such as:
- Manual or electric powered wheelchairs
- Standing wheelchairs
- Electric scooters
Sometimes children prefer scooters because it gives them more freedom and independence than when using a wheelchair.
Eating and Drinking Issues
Cerebral palsy can affect children’s ability to chew and swallow food. Others may thrust out their tongue while eating. It can be difficult for children to feed themselves because they may lack fine motor skills to hold a fork or cup. About one in 15 children with cerebral palsy must be fed with a feeding tube.
Some of the ways to help a child eat and drink independently include:
- Using larger utensils that are easier to grasp
- Providing two-handled drinking cups
Bathroom and Hygiene Issues
About 25% of children with cerebral palsy have bladder control issues in the form of incontinence (unable to control urination). Others have problems with constipation due to lack of mobility. One-third of children with cerebral palsy have hip and/or spine displacement, which makes using a toilet and bathing difficult.
Some assistive devices and adaptations can make toilet and bathing issues easier. These include:
- Adaptive toilet seat with grip bars
- Non-skid surfaces
- Shower seat with a handheld nozzle
- Safety railing or “crash bar” in the shower or bath
- Electric toothbrushes and plastic molded flossers
Children with cerebral palsy may not have the fine motor skills to manipulate snaps, hooks, or buttons. Children who have intellectual impairments may not be able to select proper clothing for the weather or social situation.
Some of the ways that parents and caregivers can make getting dressed easier include:
- Interactive toys that teach children how to button, snap, and zip
- Selecting clothes that are easy to put on and take off, such as a cardigan instead of a pullover sweater
- Medical supply stores have devices for people with motor function impairments that make getting dressed easier
- Letting children pick out their own clothes (with gentle guidance as necessary) helps make them more likely to be patient about learning to get dressed
A good day can depend on getting a good night’s sleep, but this can be challenging for a child with cerebral palsy. About one-fifth of children with cerebral palsy have a sleep disorder caused by muscle spasms, pain, and epilepsy.
Some of the ways that children can get a better night’s rest include:
- Keeping rooms dark or dimly lit at a comfortable temperature
- Avoiding soda, caffeine, and sugary treats three hours before bedtime
- Limiting naps to 15 or 20 minutes at the most
How Long Will It Take to Receive a Settlement in my Cerebral Palsy Case?
How long it will take to receive a settlement in your cerebral palsy lawsuit depends on many factors. Your attorney can help you get a better idea of how long the process may take, but there is no way to know exactly how long it could take.
It is imperative you do not miss the deadline your state places on medical malpractice cases, so you should enlist the help of an attorney near you who regularly handles this type of birth injury case as soon as possible after your child’s diagnosis.
Understanding Possible Timelines in a Cerebral Palsy Birth Injury Case
Pursuing compensation in a cerebral palsy birth injury case takes time. The first step is not to file a lawsuit. Instead, your attorney will need to navigate several steps to build a strong case and attempt to recover a payout through settlement negotiations.
Along the way, the attorney will need to follow specific guidelines, file the appropriate paperwork, and meet other deadlines to avoid delays in your case. This is key in getting through this process as quickly as possible and getting your payout.
Proving Your Cerebral Palsy Birth Injury Case
Once you agree to work with an attorney, one of the first things they will do is get to work on proving your case. This may require:
- Identifying all potentially liable parties
- Interviewing witnesses
- Obtaining copies of relevant medical records that validate symptoms and diagnosis
- Working with a medical expert witness to prove medical malpractice
- Working with experts to learn about your child’s prognosis, possible necessary treatments, ongoing and future care needs, and other current and future expenses
- Documenting your expenses and losses related to your child’s condition up to this point
Taking Legal Action
Only after your attorney completes the investigation and case-building part of their effort can they consider pursuing a payout on your behalf. This is because they will not have a good idea of the value of your case—your losses and expenses—until this point.
With strong evidence to support a medical malpractice claim and a fair settlement value in mind, your attorney can then try to negotiate a just out-of-court settlement. This negotiation process may take time as they go back and forth several times, trying to reach an agreement. Still, this is usually faster than taking the case to court.
Your attorney will file a medical malpractice lawsuit against the liable doctor or hospital in your state’s civil court if necessary.
Several Deadlines Could Affect Your Case
Each state has a statute of limitations on medical malpractice cases. This is a general deadline for filing a lawsuit against a liable doctor or hospital. Sometimes, meeting this deadline is more difficult than it may seem.
Getting an accurate diagnosis and understanding how profoundly cerebral palsy affects your child often takes time. A baby may display delayed motor development, exhibit too tight or too floppy muscle tone, or have other signs and symptoms of the condition, but even with an official cerebral palsy diagnosis, it is often difficult to understand how it could affect the child’s life as he grows.
This can cause a significant delay since this is key in proving both future medical expenses and non-economic losses. Many states have laws that toll the statute of limitations in birth injury cases, but there is ultimately a statute of repose in place, after which you lose your right to file suit.
Understanding What Happens After You Win Your Cerebral Palsy Case
Unfortunately, there is still more waiting once your attorney successfully negotiates an out-of-court settlement or the judge awards you compensation at trial. You will need to sign a settlement agreement if the payout does not come through the court. The medical malpractice insurance company will not cut a check until they receive a release saying you accept the settlement and will not pursue additional compensation.
Once the insurance company representative cuts the check — which could take only a few days or several weeks — they will send it to your attorney. Your attorney will deposit it, take out the fees you agreed on, and then they will write a check to you.
Talk to a Birth Injury Attorney Near You About Your Cerebral Palsy Case
If you believe your child’s cerebral palsy, whatever the type may be, is the result of a preventable birth injury, you may be eligible to pursue and recover compensation from the liable doctor or hospital. The Birth Injury Lawyers Group can help you get started today. Call (800) 222-9529 and you will be connected with an attorney in your state who handles cerebral palsy birth injury cases.
Cerebral Palsy News
Extreme Filth Found in Home After Police Investigation
Unfortunately, not all cases can be won or are eligible for compensation. Sometimes, a lack of help can drive people to do horrible things for the people they are supposed to care for. Such seems to be the case, as reported in this incident by Deseret News in Utah.
A woman in Salt Lake City has been arrested and charged after police found her home and family in awful conditions. The woman was supposed to be taking care of her husband, who has dementia, and her daughter, who has cerebral palsy.
Police found the husband wandering outside the house and were told that he wanted to file a complaint against his wife. The police noticed the man was extremely thin and had awful hygiene. No call was made by his wife about his disappearance.
Among his complaints, he said that there was human waste on the walls and that his wife was controlling his finances and behavior. When the police came over to investigate, the woman refused the officers entry into the home. However, they noticed feces on the woman’s feet, many flies, and a strong odor.
From this evidence, they were able to obtain a warrant. Multiple dead animals and rotten food were found. The daughter lashed out at officers and appeared to be blind. According to neighbors, they had never seen the daughter outside.
The home was condemned, and the husband and daughter were taken in by Adult Protective Services.
Man Assaults Disabled Person for Asking Not to Park in a Handicapped Spot
The Americans With Disabilities Act has helped people with disabilities gain much more independence, but some people choose to ignore their rights. One man has been arrested for assault after harming a man in a wheelchair in California over a simple question.
The man was born with a rare disease called syringomyelia, which is when a cavity grows inside the spinal cord and causes paralysis. The man can only move his arms and head.
He saw an SUV parked illegally in a handicapped spot. After wheeling himself out, he went to talk to the woman in the vehicle, asking them not to park there again. Then he went inside a Target to make a return.
The woman’s boyfriend confronted him at the counter, demanding an apology for ‘scaring’ his girlfriend. The handicapped man asked if he could finish his return, but the man grabbed his wheelchair, pushed him through the store, then dumped him onto the ground. The incident broke the 52-year-old disabled man’s wrist.
Security footage caught the incident, and store workers were able to give police enough information to arrest the man for felony assault and attempted kidnapping. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges. But the injured man has had his life shattered.
He needs his arm strength to stay independent, and now he can’t use one arm, forcing him to depend on a nurse to survive. He cannot get out of his wheelchair on his own, nor can he shop for himself. He has also lost the ability to play guitar.
Nurse Allegedly Burns Young Woman with CP In Shower
Parents of children with severe disabilities might have to hire an in-home nurse in order to care for them while they go to work. Many amazing people in this profession do an excellent job of helping their charges. But not all of them are skilled enough or compassionate enough for the job.
One nurse is under scrutiny after allegedly burning a young adult with cerebral palsy by making her shower too hot, ABC 13 reports.
The young woman was born with cerebral palsy and cannot speak or walk. According to her family, a nurse hired through an in-home care service did not properly monitor the water temperature before a shower scalded the victim on her back and private areas. It may have been deliberate.
When her mother discovered her daughter’s heart rate was too high, she took her to the hospital where the burns were discovered. Since the incident, the nurse has been charged, and both the nurse and her employer are under a lawsuit.
We hope that a full investigation is completed into this incident and that the family receives due compensation. As most of us know, hot liquids can cause incredibly painful injuries worthy of compensation if they are deliberately caused by someone else.
Senior Student with CP Successfully Completes FFA Course
When children with cerebral palsy or another birth injury get the support and care they need, they can achieve just as much as abled children. A good example of this was reported by the Meridian Star.
A high school senior with cerebral palsy recently competed in an agricultural show showing off a pig that she raised for her Future Farmers of America class.
To help raise the pig, she has a special wheelchair that looks like a tractor to handle the outdoor environment. Working farm tasks from a wheelchair or crutches was tough, but she wanted to be in an independent class where she could move more.
One of the reasons she was able to succeed was because her family encouraged her to participate in anything she wanted to do growing up. She’s even a hunter. By using a mount for her weapon, she has managed to take down several large game animals.
Now she is looking for a community college with an FFA club so she can continue her farm studies.
If you have a child with a disability, don’t let their challenges get in the way of their dreams. There are many ways you can help them to grow up with a sense of independence. Reach out to local disability advocacy groups and find out how you can help.