How Negligence Can Lead To Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy compensation can never erase the terrible difficulty of living with cerebral palsy, but a successful claim can help to hugely increase quality of life for the sufferer and their family.

Cerebral palsy is defined as any non-progressive motor disorder caused by chronic brain injuries in the prenatal and perinatal stages and within the first few years of life. Disorder in motor function caused by the condition can range from difficulty in finer motor functions to sever and constant muscle spasticity. Cerebral palsy affects 1 in 400 babies in the U.K. According to The International Cerebral Palsy Task Force, an estimated 10% of cerebral palsy cases are caused by injuries inflicted during the birth.

Medical malpractice claims are complex issues. Claims concerning cerebral palsy in particular need to take into account a vast number of factors. 

There are a number of law firms that specialise in birth injuries and in cerebral palsy - to increase the chances of a successful claim it is highly advisable to seek advice from a medical negligence solicitor specialising in birth injuries.

There are a number of factors which can increase the chance of a birth injury in a baby. These can include:

- Babies weighing more than 8 pounds 13 ounces (or 4kg) are more susceptible to injury, as are premature babies (before 37 weeks)

- Cephalopelvic Disproportion. This is the medical term for when the mother's pelvis is of insufficient size or shape for vaginal delivery.

- Dystocia. This is the medical term for a lengthy or particularly difficult labour.

- Breech births. When the baby is not born in the usual head-first position.

There are a number of aspects surrounding the birth which a medical malpractice lawyer will look into when assessing whether you have a claim. In genuine situations, these are often complex and are rarely black and white. They are included here only as a guide. The presence of one or more of these aspects within any given situation does not automatically mean that a malpractice claim would be successful.

- failure to anticipate complications, especially if complications have been observed during previous births and are likely to reoccur

-failure to respond to unexpected complications during the birth, including bleeding, umbilical cord complications or fetal distresses such as irregular heart-beat.

-misjudgements or oversights during delivery, such as misuse of forceps/vacuum extractor or inappropriate administration of drugs or hormones to induce or speed up labour

- lack of (or insufficient) appropriate after-care for newborns

Because of the complex nature of medical malpractice claims, your lawyer would usually need to examine all of the babies medical records, especially those associated with the birth. It is also common to have these reviewed by a nurse or physician. On average, birth injury and cerebral palsy claims take 3 years to complete, but depending on the nature of the case, can take upwards of 4 years. Complications can sometimes arise around when the claim was brought. This is something that you can discuss with your lawyer as they help to assess your claim.

Article Source: Ben Stuart Greenwood

1 comment:

  1. Sadly this is something that we see all to often in Australia. Thanks for the insights - Medical Negligence Claims