Cerebral Palsy Causes
Because of how drastically cerebral palsy can affect a person’s life, it's important to understand why this condition occurs and what can be done to mitigate the worst aspects. Cerebral palsy is typically experienced due to an interruption of brain development. The exact cause for individual cases is often unknown because it can be triggered by a number of birth defects or by the mother suffering an infection during pregnancy.
Brain development may also be interrupted due to traumatic brain injury or lack of oxygen during the birthing process. This cause of cerebral palsy may occur due to improper usage of delivery tools, difficulty during the delivery process, or even a blow to the head if the baby is dropped after birth. Brain damage leading to cerebral palsy can also occur due to a buildup of bilirubin in the baby’s bloodstream, which is commonly known as jaundice. That condition is easily treated but is sometimes overlooked due to medical malpractice.
In any of these cases, the life-altering effects of cerebral palsy may have occurred due to negligence on the part of the medical staff during pregnancy or throughout the actual birthing process. Regardless of its specific root cause, cerebral palsy often isn’t diagnosed until several years after birth.
Potential Treatment Options for Cerebral Palsy
Even in milder cases, cerebral palsy will have an impact on daily life from infancy onward. While there is no cure for cerebral palsy, there are long-term therapy options to improve the overall quality of life. These kinds of treatments may be required throughout the patient’s life:
- Occupational therapy
- Physical therapy
- Speech therapy
- Assisted living stays or in-home care visits
In severe cases, surgeries may also be required to deal with symptoms, including orthopedic surgery on affected extremities, gastrointestinal surgery for inserting a feeding tube, and corrective vision surgery.
These constant therapeutic treatments and possible surgical requirements are difficult for both the cerebral palsy patient and family members as bills pile up. If the original traumatic brain injury was caused by negligence, you have a legal right to seek compensation for medical costs, inability to hold down a job, pain and suffering, and ongoing expenses for therapy.