Children and adults living with the dyskinetic form of cerebral palsy struggle with uncontrolled movements. These movements — often abrupt and startling or slow and writhing — prevent them from being able to live a normal life. They require ongoing therapy, medication, and help, often for the rest of their lives.
If your child has dyskinetic cerebral palsy, and you believe medical negligence is to blame, let an attorney near you from the Birth Injury Lawyers Group review your child’s case for free. You may be able to pursue damages to help pay for your child’s care. Call today to learn more.
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Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy Lawsuits
You may have a medical malpractice case based on your child’s dyskinetic cerebral palsy diagnosis if you can show the brain injury that caused the baby’s condition occurred because of:
- A medical error; or
- A preventable birth injury; or
- Medical neglect, often a failure to adequately monitor the mother and baby
Your attorney can help you collect evidence to prove your case and hold the doctor liable. This evidence will need to prove that the doctor acted negligently and failed to provide an acceptable standard of care, causing your baby to suffer brain injuries and resulting in cerebral palsy.
With a strong case, you may be able to recover damages that include medical care costs, ongoing care costs, the cost of mobility and communication aids, out-of-pocket costs, pain and suffering, and more.
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Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy Types
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the types of dyskinetic cerebral palsy include:
People with a dyskinetic type of cerebral palsy have uncontrolled movements in the parts of their body affected, often the hands, arms, legs, feet, face, and tongue. These movements make it difficult to walk, work with their hands, or even sit still. Some people have difficulty eating, drinking, and talking.
The muscle tone of someone with this type of cerebral palsy can vary drastically over a few hours or days, going from rigid to floppy and back again unpredictably.
Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy Causes
In most cases, dyskinetic cerebral palsy occurs because of damage to the brain’s basal ganglia. When this area of the brain sustains damage and can no longer send and receive messages from the muscles, the damage impairs its ability to coordinate and control movement. The result is involuntary, uncontrolled, and abnormal movements, as well as difficulty with voluntary movement.
Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy Symptoms
When someone with a type of dyskinetic cerebral palsy tries to move, their body instead reacts differently and unpredictably. Dyskinetic cerebral palsy has three characteristic types of involuntary movement:
- Dystonia, a repetitive twisting movement that can be painful
- Athetosis, a slow, writhing movement
- Chorea, unusual, abrupt, and jerking movement
They may also have additional symptoms that can occur with any type of cerebral palsy, including seizures, intellectual disabilities, hearing or vision problems, and more.
Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy Diagnosis and Treatment
There is no single test or medical imaging scan used to diagnose dyskinetic cerebral palsy. Instead, the doctor and the child’s parents will work together to get a well-rounded picture of the child’s: health care professionals look at many things, including a child’s:
- Muscle tone
The child may undergo testing to locate the damaged area of the brain, to rule out other causes of their symptoms, and to determine how the damage to their brain affects them. This could include:
- MRI, CT scan, and/or ultrasound
- Testing to rule out other genetic and congenital conditions
- Electroencephalography (EEG) to look at the electrical activity in the brain
- Electromyography (EMG) to better understand the affected muscles
- Speech, hearing, and vision testing
Treatment for dyskinetic cerebral palsy often focuses on physical and occupational therapy to develop and maintain mobility, self-care, and other skills. Speech therapy is necessary for some children. Medication can help relax muscles. Most children with this type of cerebral palsy do not need surgery but may rely on wheelchairs and communication aids.
Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know if my baby has dyskinetic cerebral palsy?
Most children with cerebral palsy receive their diagnosis in the second year of life. The uncontrolled movements associated with dyskinetic cerebral palsy may be obvious by this time. If your child fails to meet motor-related milestones such as crawling, walking, and talking, you may want to discuss your concerns with a trusted pediatrician.
Can Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy be fatal?
Dyskinetic cerebral palsy is unlikely to cause your child to pass away, but it could significantly impact their quality of life. To give your child the best possible outcome, it is important to begin therapy and other treatment as soon as you receive a diagnosis.
Who is liable for Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy?
If you can prove your child suffers from dyskinetic cerebral palsy because of a medical error, preventable birth injury, or medical neglect, you may be able to hold the doctor who monitored your pregnancy and delivered your baby liable. In some cases, you can show the hospital had a careless or lackadaisical attitude toward preventing and treating birth injuries and hold the hospital liable, as well.
What is the statute of limitations for Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy?
How long you have to file a lawsuit for medical negligence and malpractice depends on where you live. Each state has its own rules and sets its own deadlines for this type of case. Luckily, most states have a law that tolls the period for several years or more if the victim is a minor. This allows time for your child’s symptoms to appear and you to get a diagnosis.
Your attorney can help you understand the statute of limitations and any statute of repose that exists and affects your case.
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Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy Glossary Terms
- What Is Athetosis?: Athetosis is the slow, writhing movement common in dyskinetic cerebral palsy, including the choreoathetoid and athetoid forms of the condition.
- What Is Chorea?: Chorea is an irregular and abrupt movement that occurs as a part of dyskinetic cerebral palsy.
- What Is Dystonia?: Dystonia is a painful, twisting, repetitive movement that is common in dyskinetic cerebral palsy. They are most characteristic of the dystonic form of dyskinetic cerebral palsy.
Contact Birth Injury Lawyers Group to Find a Medical Malpractice Attorney in Your State
If your toddler or child has dyskinetic cerebral palsy and you believe a doctor’s actions or inaction are to blame, you may want to contact the Birth Injury Lawyers Group today at 1-800-222-9529. You can connect with a birth injury attorney who practices in your state and can evaluate your child’s medical malpractice case for free.