When A Medical Mistake Causes Cerebral Palsy

Medical Malpractice Mistakes

If a newborn did not get enough oxygen during the birth process, brain damage may result, and/or cerebral palsy.  Unfortunately, many of the errors that cause cerebral palsy could have been prevented.  The types of negligence that can cause cerebral palsy can include a delayed reaction to signs that the fetus is in distress, failure to perform a Cesarean section in a timely manner, or the misuse of forceps or vacuum devices during delivery.

There are many symptoms of cerebral palsy.  However, most of these symptoms are not apparent immediately at birth or during early infancy.  As the child’s nervous system develops they become more apparent.  The symptoms may be so subtle that only medical professionals will notice or they may be severe enough that they are obvious to parents and caretakers.  Symptoms can include:

  • Delayed development.  Normal milestones, such as head control, rolling over, sitting alone, crawling, reaching out with one hand, and walking, are delayed or not met.
  • Failure of infantile reflexes to dissipate within six months of birth.
  • Showing a preference for the right or left hand prior to eighteen months.
  • Muscle tone that is either stiff and spastic or extremely relaxed and/or floppy.
  • Movements that are jerky or slow and writhing.
  • The affected side has shortened bone structure.
  • Stiffening of the joints that is severe.
  • Mental retardation.
  • Seizures.
  • Impaired swallowing.
  • Speech impairment.
  • Hearing loss.
  • Dental problems.
  • Vision problems.
  • Problems with bowel and bladder control.

So how does medical malpractice cause cerebral palsy?  Cerebral palsy results from a brain injury.  When a medical professional fails to follow standard medical procedures, medical malpractice occurs.  You have a cause of action for medical malpractice if your child’s cerebral palsy is due to the failure of a medical professional to follow such procedures.  It is possible to receive financial compensation for the damages and expenses you and your child incurred or will incur due to the medical mistake.

But what do you think?  I would love to hear from you!  Leave a comment or I also welcome your phone call on my toll-free cell at 1-866-889-6882 or you can drop me an e-mail at jfisher@fishermalpracticelaw.com.  You are always welcome to request my FREE book, The Seven Deadly Mistakes of Malpractice Victims, at the home page of my website at www.protectingpatientrights.com.