The Link Between Cerebral Palsy and Medical Negligence at Birth

Palsy is used to describe weakness, paralysis or the struggle of muscle control and coordination, whilst cerebral refers to the brain and its functions. In short, cerebral palsy is a disruption between the brain and the signals it sends in order to coordinate muscle movement with the body.

Types of Cerebral Palsy

Types of Cerebral Palsy include spastic, Dyskinetic and Ataxic. Spastic Cerebral Palsy is one of the most common kinds and is defined by stiffness and tension in the muscles. When a group of muscles is in use, they stiffen and contract whilst the opposing side eases in order to help perform the movement. This occurs as a result of disorderly signals that come from the damaged part of the brain.

Causes of Cerebral Palsy

Most causes of Cerebral Palsy can be traced to an incident or multiple incidents that happened before, during or after birth. A mother that has been exposed to German Measles or other viruses, not receiving enough oxygen or blood to the brain during birth or improper care of the baby after birth can all be causes of Cerebral Palsy

Medical Negligence

Recent research has suggested that problems during pregnancy account for approximately seventy-five percent of Cerebral Palsy cases, whilst ten to fifteen percent of cases occur as a result of problems during birth or in the neonatal phase (birth to one month).

Many of these instances are the result of medical negligence such as failure to diagnose an illness in the mother and provide treatment, improper management of foetal stress, failure to diagnose and treat umbilical cord or placenta issues, deprivation of oxygen that could have been prevented etc. (please refer to our previous article)

What Now?

If there have been any complications during the birth of your child, C.T Scans and MRI Scans can detect irregularities and any brain damage that occurred as a result. If you feel that your medical practitioner has failed to take the necessary steps to keep you and your child safe, contact Paul du Plessis Attorneys or visit their website for more information on what can be done.

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