Cerebral Palsy

What is Cerebral Palsy?

Cerebral palsy is a combination of conditions that directly affect movement, balance, and posture. Individuals diagnosed with cerebral palsy have abnormalities in parts of the brain that leave them unable to control their muscles. An excerpt taken from the March of Dimes Foundation reports, “Many children with cerebral palsy have other conditions that require treatment. These include mental retardation, learning disabilities, seizures, abnormal physical sensations (difficulties with sense of touch), and problems with vision, hearing and speech.“

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have found 2 to 3 children out 1,000 have cerebral palsy. Additionally, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke published a study that found 800,000 children and adults in the United States have cerebral palsy.

There are three main types of cerebral palsy:

  • Spastic cerebral palsy: The CDC reports that 70 to 80 percent of individuals have the spastic type, causing muscles to be stiff and making movement difficult.
  • Athetoid or dyskinetic cerebral palsy: The CDC reports about 10 to 20 percent of cases are of the athetoid variety, which has adverse affects on the whole body.
  • Ataxic cerebral palsy: The CDC has found that about 5 to 10 percent of cases are ataxic, which affects balance and coordination.

Potential Causes of Cerebral Palsy

There are several risk factors that may increase the chances of a child developing cerebral palsy:

  • Prematurity: A child born before 37 weeks that weighs less than 3 1/3 pounds is between 20 and 80 times more likely to be affected by cerebral palsy than a full-term child. This may occur because the infant oftentimes suffers from bleeding in the brain, which may damage brain tissue.
  • Infections during pregnancy: Certain infections in the mother can cause brain damage and result in cerebral palsy.
  • Insufficient oxygen reaching the fetus.
  • Asphyxia (lack of oxygen) during labor and delivery.
  • Severe jaundice.
  • Blood clotting disorders (thrombophilias).

The potential causes of cerebral palsy stem for the most part from birth injuries rather than birth defects. This fact is sometimes confusing, and can cause birth defect misperceptions.

Am I Eligible for a Cerebral Palsy Lawsuit?

If your child was born with cerebral palsy, you may be eligible to file a cerebral palsy lawsuit. For assistance, contact one of Chaffin Luhana LLP’s cerebral palsy lawyers at 1-888-480-1123 for a free and confidential case review today. You may be eligible for compensation, and the lawyers at Chaffin Luhana can help.