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Why Parents Should Consider Seeking Legal Help for a Child with Cerebral Palsy

cerebral_palsy_when_to_seek_legal_adviceA diagnosis confirming cerebral palsy in a child can change the dynamics of any family that could last a lifetime. Also referred to as static encephalopathy, cerebral palsy is actually a group of chronic disorders that impair the child’s control of movement. In many incidences, the condition develops during pregnancy, at the time of childbirth delivery or in the child’s first years of life. Many times, the condition is caused by an injury at birth that could be the result of human error or medical malpractice.

Characterizations of Cerebral Palsy

Often times, the condition affects the body’s nervous system that directly controls or regulates muscles. The medical condition is characterized by seizures, paralysis and spasticity caused by trauma during crucial development stages. Many patients with the condition experience mental retardation, delayed motor skills, and visual disturbance.

Causes of CP

Birth trauma or birth injury will often result in complications during the labor and delivery stages at levels from mild to severe. Cerebral palsy can often occur before and during birth when the brain becomes damaged. The injury may be the result of improper medical response when the fetus is in distress.

As a way to prevent birth injury, hospitals and other medical facilities should use a fetal monitoring system that has the ability to track the child’s heart rate and how it responds to the mother’s contractions.

Typically, cerebral palsy is the result of insufficient oxygen to the fetus during delivery. There is no known cure for the medical condition. However, there is a variety of treatment methods that include surgery, drug therapy, physical therapy, occupational therapy, psychological therapy and others based on each individual’s unique needs.

Medical Malpractice

Often times, patients suffer cerebral palsy when the delivery physician fails to recognize distress of the infant, and respond accordingly. Anytime the medical staff was negligent in their duties, the hospital, doctors, nurses and other health care providers should be held responsible.

Families need to receive financial compensation because birth injury costs can skyrocket throughout the child’s lifetime. Many times, cerebral palsy treatments include emergency surgeries, long-term treatment, and ongoing care. Not only is the birth injury traumatic on the child, but the devastating event can create life-altering changes for the entire family.

Every immediate member of the family needs to deal with the psychological and emotional distress suffered as a result of the child’s medical condition. Over the cerebral palsy afflicted patient’s lifetime, he or she will endure extremely challenging educational, social and medical developments.

Legal Options

Children and families dealing with cerebral palsy caused by the negligence of the medical facility and staff should file a lawsuit or claim for financial compensation. Skilled Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC can assist the victim in determining damages to achieve a successful result through medical malpractice litigation. Attorneys will build a solid case based on a number of violations that could have happened when providing unacceptable standards of practice on both the mother and the child. These violations include:

  • Disclosure breach
  • Misdiagnosis
  • Improper treatments
  • Pharmacy, prescription or medication error
  • Birth injury
  • Equipment failure
  • System failure
  • Wrongful life or wrongful birth

Often times, improper treatment by the medical team during and/or after birth will result in the development of cerebral palsy in the child. Common errors and mistakes might include:

  • Failure to properly assess and respond to problems, health conditions or the birthing process
  • Failure to perform a necessary procedure, treatment or surgery
  • Failure to notice or make appropriate response to fetal distress or fetal condition
  • Failure to perform a cesarean section in a timely manner due to fetal distress, infection, extended labor or other condition
  • Delayed treatment or denial of treatment

Skilled Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC can seek compensatory damages as recovery for the child’s injury associated with the medical condition. In some incidences, punitive damages are sought as a way to punish the responsible parties in an effort to deter similar actions in the future.