Cerebral palsy is as likely to occur due to pre-natal complications or simple misfortune as from doctor error, but when cerebral palsy at birth comes from medical malpractice, you are entitled to damages caused by that negligence. Such negligence can be hard to prove, however. Strengthen your case by following these five basic rules.
1. Know the Signs
Although early identification of cerebral palsy symptoms can’t cure or minimize the condition, it can help you identify likely causes of the brain damage. Some signs include abnormal muscle tone or movements, imbalanced or delayed development, skeletal deformities and joint contractures. Seizures and are another common symptom, but a symptom shared with a variety of other disorders.
2. Write Everything Down
Keep a journal of prenatal care, doctor visits, impressions from delivery and baby behavior and development after the birth. This will help you stay alert for warning signs, and to establish a timeline to help prove your case if a cerebral palsy lawsuit is necessary.
3. Copy the Records
Get and keep a copy of all records of your prenatal care, delivery and post-natal care. The law requires meticulous records of all care provider action, including decisions that can later be proven to be mistakes.
4. Identify a Cause
In court, your attorney will have to prove a specific act of negligence or improper practice on the part of the doctor, his staff, or the facility where you had your delivery. This is easier to do if you can point to a specific decision or action. Review your memories, journals and medical records for likely causes of your child’s disability.
5. Get Professional Help
Ultimately, only a lawyer or medical specialist will be able to tell you whether or not cerebral palsy at birth is caused by medical malpractice. In Chicago, cerebral palsy lawyers like ours review hundreds of negligence cases each year to help families hold doctors accountable for their actions.