Distinguished Birth Injury Lawyers Help Cerebral Palsy Victims in West Virginia
Aggressive representation of children and their families where cerebral palsy resulted from medical malpractice
Cerebral palsy (CP) is a term that describes a group of neuromuscular disorders caused by brain damage. It affects its victims’ ability to control their muscles, which in turn affects their muscle tone, balance, coordination, posture, reflexes, and overall body movement. The most common type, called spastic CP, may affect just the legs, arms and legs or, in its most severe form, the entire body and face. This severe form often includes other disabling conditions: intellectual problems, problems with vision, hearing, and speech, and seizures. It often takes months – sometimes even years – for the symptoms of CP to present.
Paulson & Nace, PLLC, our family-owned law firm, knows how agonizing the effects of CP can be on children, and how devastating they can be, both emotionally and financially, on their families. Our team of Cerebral Palsy lawyers in West Virginia has helped families obtain the compensation they need to provide specialized educational and medical support for their CP-afflicted children. If your child developed CP as a result of medical malpractice, we may be able to help you, too.
What causes CP?
CP is said to be one of the most common results of birth injury. Research by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke indicates that delivery complications such as birth asphyxia account for severe CP in five to ten percent of newborns. Among its causes are:
- Brain damage or injury during pregnancy. For example fetal hypoxia, a condition in which there is a lack of oxygen to the developing baby’s brain, can result in permanent brain damage if not addressed timely. Some expectant mothers, such as smokers, diabetics, those with blood disorders, preeclampsia, or mental disorders such as schizophrenia, are at greater risk of fetal hypoxia than others. Proper care requires that they be monitored more closely than other patients for signs that the condition is occurring.
- Brain damage during labor and delivery, and afterward. CP is frequently traceable to brain damage or injury during labor and delivery. A number of conditions may cause birth asphyxia, or lack of oxygen to the baby's brain and other organs at the time of birth. These may include:
- Insufficient oxygen in the mother's bloodstream before or during birth;
- The placenta separating from the uterus too soon;
- Long or difficult delivery;
- Strangulation of the fetus by its umbilical cord during delivery;
- Serious, untreated infection in the mother or baby;
- High or low blood pressure in the mother; or,
- Malformation or blockage of the baby's airway.
- Brain damage following birth. When a premature baby, or even one born at full term, develops respiratory distress and fails to get enough oxygen through breathing, brain injury can occur unless supplemental oxygen is immediately provided.
What parents can do
If your child has developed CP, you will face significant expenses for his or her future medical treatment and special education. If their disability resulted from a hospital’s or medical professional’s straying from the standards of reasonable medical care during pregnancy, delivery or after childbirth, you may be entitled to compensation for those expenses. A health care professional may have breached the standard by failure to:
- Treat or prevent infection the in mother or baby during pregnancy, labor, or delivery.
- Offer or recommend a Cesarean section during an unusually long or difficult labor.
- Properly monitor the baby’s vital signs and respond timely to fetal distress.
- Properly use instruments, causing skull and brain damage.
West Virginia’s statute of limitations for medical malpractice is two years from the date the injury occurs, or from the date it becomes (or should have become) evident. Since the symptoms of CP often do not present for many months, or even for years, it is important that you seek the legal advice of a West Virginia Cerebral Palsy attorney as soon as you become aware of your child displaying them.
Our family of birth injury lawyers helps clients throughout West Virginia
Paulson & Nace, PLLC, our family-owned and managed law firm, is well known throughout West Virginia for our compassionate care and comprehensive legal services to the families of CP victims. When you choose a birth trauma lawyer from our practice to represent you, you are choosing a team that values family. Please call 304-741-8079 or fill out our contact form to tell us your story in a no-obligation consultation. Our office is located at 3501 Maccorkle Ave SE, Charleston, WV 25304.
We have dedicated our lives to helping medical malpractice victims. Let our family help yours.