Was My Child’s Cerebral Palsy Preventable? Insights from a Birth Injury Lawyer in New Orleans
Cerebral palsy refers to a group of disorders that affect muscle coordination. According to the Cerebral Palsy Alliance, CP can arise during development or shortly after birth. It occurs as a result of damage to the brain.
When CP occurs as a result of brain damage before or during birth, it is called congenital CP which, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention makes up 85 percent of all cases. When a child develops cerebral palsy as a result of brain damage that happens more than four weeks after birth, it is called acquired CP.
CP can develop due to genetics, in which case it is not preventable. In some cases, though, it develops as a result of injury or illness before, during, or shortly after birth.
If your child has cerebral palsy and you think it developed as a direct result of negligent care during labor and delivery, a brain injury attorney from The Bowling Law Firm may be able to help. Call (504) 586-5200 to schedule a consultation with a birth injury lawyer in New Orleans.
What Are the Risk Factors of Cerebral Palsy?
In order to determine if your child’s CP was preventable, it helps to understand the major risk factors of the condition. Some of these factors are fairly easy to mitigate
, while others are out of your control. Risk factors of congenital CP include:
Low birth weight or premature delivery;
Infections during pregnancy;
Jaundice and kernicterus shortly after birth;
Delivery complications; and
Some cases of congenital cerebral palsy are not preventable, but many cases of acquired CP are. A child can develop acquired CP through natural means such as a stroke, accidental means such as car crash injuries, or purposeful means such as shaken baby syndrome.
Women can reduce the risk of their child having congenital CP by getting all of their vaccinations and treating any infections before conceiving. During pregnancy, women should take a proactive approach to their prenatal care and contact their doctor as soon as possible if they develop any signs of infection.
Unfortunately, a woman who takes care of herself before and during pregnancy can still have a child with congenital or acquired cerebral palsy. For example, complications could arise during delivery that inhibit blood flow to the brain, and any subsequent oxygen deprivation could lead to the development of CP.
If the oxygen deprivation occurs as a result of medical malpractice, any conditions that result, including cerebral palsy, were essentially preventable. If your child has congenital or acquired CP and you think it developed as a direct result of substandard medical care during or shortly after delivery, contact The Bowling Law Firm. You may be entitled to compensation for medical bills and other damages.