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What Causes Cerebral Palsy


  • Published: 2010-10-31 (Revised/Updated 2016-09-24) : Author: Robbins & Associates, P.C.
  • Synopsis: Cerebral Palsy (CP) is a condition affecting the brains ability to direct motor functions in the body often leading to permanent physical disability.

Cerebral Palsy (CP) is a condition affecting the brain's ability to direct motor functions in the body, often leading to permanent physical disability.

The spastic muscle movements, posture and gait problems, language difficulty, and musculoskeletal problems associated with CP range from mild to severe, with some individuals experiencing very little interference with normal activity and others experiencing very difficult challenges in everyday life.

Cerebral Palsy is often mistakenly assumed to be related to intellectual and developmental disabilities, but the IQ of people with CP ranges from genius to mentally retarded, just like the non-CP population. People with Cerebral Palsy are more likely to experience learning disabilities, but this does not reflect actual intellectual capacity.

Causes of Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral Palsy can be caused by a variety of factors, but most often is the result of severe oxygen deprivation in the brain, which can occur during pregnancy, childbirth, and infancy through age three. Prematurely born babies are much more likely to develop CP because their internal organs are not fully developed, leading to increased risk of oxygen deprivation.

In some cases, there is reason to believe that mistakes by medical professionals before, during, and after delivery have led to oxygen deprivation to the brain, causing the baby to later show signs of Cerebral Palsy. If it can be proved that negligence on the part of a doctor or hospital staff contributed to a child's Cerebral Palsy, there may be grounds to bring a lawsuit with help from Atlanta medical malpractice attorneys.

Dealing with Cerebral Palsy

Living with CP, especially in severe cases, presents special challenges for the individual and his or her family. Each person with Cerebral Palsy has unique abilities and disabilities and must develop ways to cope with their own unique challenges. People with Cerebral Palsy are capable of leading normal, happy, fulfilling lives and should be encouraged to reach their full potential despite the difficulties they face.

However, because people with CP often have extra medical needs, a diagnosis of Cerebral Palsy can have a large financial impact on a family. Individuals with Cerebral Palsy may need physical and speech therapy for long periods of time, and may also require expensive custom equipment to help them walk and perform other daily activities. Therefore, if you believe that your child's cerebral palsy was caused by the negligence of a medical professional, an Atlanta medical malpractice attorney can help you determine your legal options.

If you decide to bring a medical malpractice lawsuit to receive compensation for the medical expenses of a child with Cerebral Palsy, it is important to understand that doctors and nurses are human beings who sometimes make mistakes. There are serious risks to treating CP as something that someone has done to your child. Encouraging your child to see him or herself as a victim can be psychologically damaging and limit his or her ability to mentally and emotionally cope with the challenges he or she faces.

For more information about Cerebral Palsy-related medical malpractice lawsuits in Atlanta, please visit Robbins & Associates, P.C. online to schedule a consultation at www.robbinslaw.com

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