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What Causes Cerebral Palsy?

Birth injuries are far too common these days. Even with the wealth of medical knowledge and medical procedures available to medical personnel, medical malpractice during childbirth happens too often and one of the most serious birth injuries that occurs is cerebral palsy, which is something of an umbrella medical term that refers to a number of neurological disorders in which body movement and muscle coordination are severely hindered. It is believed caused by a lack of oxygen to the infant’s brain (which is called hypoxia) or to their body (which is called asphyxia) during childbirth.

Causes of Cerebral Palsy Birth Injuries

While not all cerebral palsy cases are caused by medical malpractice, a great many are, and they are usually the result of premature delivery or birth trauma caused by delivery mistakes during labor or childbirth. Often, it is caused by medical personnel who do not take the proper level of care either before or during the childbirth process. A number of risk factors during pregnancy can increase the likelihood of cerebral palsy and some of them may go undiagnosed. These can include gestational diabetes, thyroid problems, or pre-eclampsia (high blood pressure). In addition, women who are pregnant with multiple babies also have a higher risk, which means they should be monitored far more closely by hospital personnel.

In many, if not most, situations, the conditions that can lead to having a child born with cerebral palsy are preventable or treatable, but many medical personnel fail to properly recognize and address the signs and symptoms of fetal hypoxia or an infection in either pregnant women or those who have gone into labor.

For example, obstetricians and delivery nurses have presumably been trained to note any unusual changes in the baby’s heart rate and to recognize the issues indicating the presence of health problems, such as fetal distress, which must be addressed. Unfortunately, problems are too often ignored or go undiagnosed, thus exposing the baby to potential oxygen deprivation. Obstetricians are also supposed to repeatedly assess whether the baby is in a breech position or the umbilical cord is wrapped around the child’s neck or whether or not the child is responding appropriately to the mother’s contractions, all of which are potentially dangerous problems, but which are often ignored or not addressed properly. This, too, can leave the child susceptible to conditions that can lead to cerebral palsy.

According to researchers at the Mayo Clinic, in the U.S. and Europe, cases of cerebral palsy occur in approximately two out of every 1,000 births, but one problem with cerebral palsy cases is that it’s not always properly diagnosed in real time; in many cases, the child won’t be diagnosed for a number of years. What that means is, it will take a lot of knowledge and numerous experts to be able to determine what caused a child’s cerebral palsy. There are actually a number of examples of conditions that can lead to birth injury, including cerebral palsy and brachial plexus injury, and these are just a few. The effects won’t end when the child is born and breathing; it will have a lifelong impact on the affected children.

Texas Cerebral Palsy Birth Injury Lawyers

If you have a child with cerebral palsy, we understand what you’re going through and if we can help, we will. You deserve to know the answers and, if you are entitled to compensation, we think you deserve that. Please contact The Gutierrez Law Firm, so that we can analyze your situation and get you the help you deserve.