The CDC has released statistics concerning Cerebral Palsy, which estimate one of every 280 births will result in cerebral palsy. This number has only gone up and up over the past few years.
Cerebral palsy is one of the most common neurological disabilities found in newborn children. Cerebral palsy occurs when one or more sections of the brain do not develop properly, or due to brain damage caused by distress during delivery. In many cases, cerebral palsy may be the result of an injury caused by the health care provider, which could constitute medical malpractice.
Some of the causes may be:
- Prescribing the wrong medications during the pregnancy
- Not properly using forceps or vacuums when extracting the baby
- Not responding to fetal distress in time
- Not responding to the baby’s lack of oxygen
- Not treating jaundice in a timely manner
The bottom line is that cerebral palsy is caused by brain damage. It is not a disease, is not known to be hereditary, and is not something you can screen for. A developing baby will show no signs or symptoms, as the injury which causes Cerebral Palsy usually occurs during labor. Sometimes these events are unavoidable, and other times they are a direct result of medical malpractice.