Medical malpractice cases are a leading cause of death in the United States. However, not all medical accidents or errors are fatal, and many patients are left with lifelong disabilities or health issues because of the inattention, distraction, ineptitude, or inexperience of the doctors and medical professionals entrusted with the care of our loved ones. Birth injuries are a common example of such accidents. Human error, device issues, testing failures, and other events can lead to a birth issue that may affect an individual for as long as they live.
Within the subset of birth injuries, we have cerebral palsy. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, cerebral palsy is the most common childhood motor disability, and it affects about three children out of every 1,000. It can have a devastating impact on a family because it affects the injured individual from the moment they are born through to adulthood. If your child has cerebral palsy or if you suspect that your child suffered bodily harm of any type in a birth injury, contact the Birth Injury Lawyers Group at (800) 222-9529.
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How Cerebral Palsy Develops
The risk factors that are linked to the development of cerebral palsy are as follows:
- Multiple births
- Low birth weight
- Premature birth
- Maternal health issues
- Delivery room negligence
- Medication errors
- Abnormal brain development
- Internal bleeding or stroke
- Physical trauma
- Vehicle accidents
It is important to note that cerebral palsy can develop at any time. The condition is caused by defects, abnormalities, or injuries to the parts of the brain that control movement. Any damage to these centers can cause the following issues:
- Poor posture
- An inability to control the head or mouth
- Feeding and limb control issues
- A lack of coordination
- An inability to perform fine motor movements
- Slowed mental development
- Misaligned joints
- Stiff muscles
- Bone contractures
If a newborn or an infant suffers a birth injury, or if a child is involved in a vehicle accident, or if an adult is struck on the head and suffers a traumatic brain injury (TBI) that affects the motor centers of the brain that are responsible for voluntary muscle control, they can develop cerebral palsy.
Once the condition occurs, it cannot be undone. Brain damage is permanent, and cerebral palsy is defined as a nonprogressive disorder. However, even though the underlying factors that cause cerebral palsy do not change over time, the symptoms that it causes can change as the patient ages.
For example, a young child who has problems feeding can suffer mouth sores and dental issues as he or she ages. These issues can lead to poor physical development and malnutrition, which in turn can place the patient at higher risk for bone damage and hospitalizations. These issues can lead to frequent immobilization and time spent in bed which can then lead to muscle atrophy and bedsores. The compounding nature of the illness–and the impact that it has on caregivers and family members–is why the condition is so devastating.
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What You Should Do
If your child was diagnosed with cerebral palsy:
- Speak with your doctor to determine the type and extent of your child’s injuries.
- Perform tests to prove the existence of physical or mental disabilities.
- Do not sign anything for anyone, especially an insurance company or hospital representative.
- Keep receipts and documentation on hospital costs and other treatment expenses.
- Do not delay in seeking a second opinion on your child’s condition or initiating the treatments that he or she needs.
The costs of treatment can be substantial, and even with insurance coverage, you may find your financial resources quickly depleting as you pay for therapy, tests, and medical procedures. This financial toll is in addition to the mental and physical toll that cerebral palsy can have on a family. You may have to take time off from work to care for your injured or disabled child or arrange caretakers to supervise and care for your child whenever you are unable to. Our Sunrise Manor cerebral palsy lawyer team can help you get through this traumatic time.
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Seek Legal Assistance Today
It can be very difficult to file and pursue medical negligence or medical malpractice, particularly if you are busy simultaneously handling work responsibilities and commitments at home. You must seek the assistance of a seasoned and knowledgeable birth injury attorney team during this trying time. The Birth Injury Lawyers Group will help you:
- Collect evidence in support of your claims.
- Identify the at-fault parties who may be responsible for your child’s injuries.
- Help you compile all of your medical and related expenses.
- Deal with insurance agents and handle communications between all the parties involved in your claim.
- Quantify the value of your damages using the testimony of medical and economic prediction experts.
- Connect you to the care and treatment centers and the support groups that can help you and your family navigate the complexities and handle the trauma of your child’s birth injury diagnosis.
- Negotiate a settlement with the at-fault parties if they wish to come to an agreement on damages with you.
- Take your case to court if a fair compensation payout agreement cannot be arrived at.
Statutes of limitations apply to civil liability cases such as medical malpractice claims, so you must act quickly. If you delay in pursuing a claim, you risk either missing your filing window or being the victim of a counter-claim that states that you are responsible for the injuries and damages you outlined in your claim instead of the at-fault parties you identified. This is a serious issue and requires legal expertise to handle.
Do what you can to protect your future wellbeing and the financial security of your family. Call us today at (800) 222-9529 to schedule a free case evaluation. One of our birth injury and medical malpractice attorneys is just a call away and we will work to ensure your rights are safeguarded and that you file for whatever damages you are allowed to under the law. Call now.