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Cerebral palsy is a condition caused by damage to the motor areas in the brain, which affect its ability to control movement. Unfortunately, every year, thousands of cerebral palsy cases are a result of medical malpractice.
While we expect our medical professionals to provide the highest standard of care, there are many incidents in which doctors and hospitals make negligent errors that result in devastating life-long conditions.
Cerebral palsy can occur during pregnancy while the fetus is developing, during delivery, or in the first few years of a child’s life. Cerebral palsy from medical malpractice typically occurs during the labor due to the negligence or carelessness of a doctor, nurse, or other hospital staff.
Some medical malpractice errors that lead to cerebral palsy may include but are not limited to:
· Failure to recognize and adequately treat seizures following delivery
· Failure to detect the umbilical cord wrapped around a baby’s neck cutting off oxygen to the brain
· Excessive use of vacuum extraction
· Failure to perform a timely cesarean section
· Improper or forceful forceps use
· Failure to identify and treat fetal distress
· Failure to properly assess the mother and/or baby’s vital signs
· Failure to diagnose and treat jaundice or meningitis
There are a number of incidents that may help you determine whether your child’s cerebral palsy is due to medical malpractice. If your child was:
1) delivered with forceps or by a C-section
2) needed resuscitation after birth
3) needed special testing after birth such as an MRI or brain scan
4) suffered seizures immediately after birth
5) required oxygen to aid in breathing
6) scored low on the Apgar scale following birth
7) suffered jaundice that did not resolve shortly following birth, or
8) exhibited other signs of distress or head trauma,
medical malpractice may have been the cause of your child’s cerebral palsy.
There are many cases where a child does not exhibit any outward signs or symptoms of cerebral palsy until months or even years after delivery. Retention of certain reflexes, early hand preference, and other symptoms may be signs that a child has suffered cerebral palsy. In these cases, it is still possible for a child’s cerebral palsy to be attributable to medical negligence. Symptoms do not need to be present at birth for cerebral palsy to be caused by medical malpractice.
If you suspect your child’s cerebral palsy is a result of medical malpractice, you may be eligible to seek compensation for the losses you and your family have endured including pain and suffering, medical expenses, and past and future treatment costs. It is important to know that all medical malpractice cases are subject to a statute of limitations, which limits the time you have to file a lawsuit. It is necessary to speak to a qualified cerebral palsy attorney who can clarify the laws in your state.
An experienced cerebral palsy and medical malpractice attorney will thoroughly evaluate your case to determine whether medical mistakes were the cause of your child’s cerebral palsy. In addition, an attorney will work diligently to prepare a strong case and hire experts who will testify on your behalf. Most importantly, a competent medical malpractice attorney will work to protect your legal rights and maximize your interests. Contact us today to learn more about your legal options or to speak with a qualified and experienced medical malpractice attorney, free of charge.