Cerebral Palsy Attorneys in Grand Rapids, Michigan

It is tragic when a birth does not go as planned and a baby is left with cerebral palsy or another permanent birth injury. When birth injuries result from medical negligence, families are often left without important answers—many are never told what caused their loved one’s injury. Our Grand Rapids cerebral palsy lawyers encourage the families affected by birth injury to reach out, become educated, and discover the many resources available in Western Michigan.

The first step to coping with this terrible outcome is understanding what cerebral palsy is. Cerebral palsy (CP) is a group of brain and nervous system disorders that affect movement, hearing, vision, learning, and cognitive abilities. While the damage is permanent, there are therapies and treatments that can manage and improve medical conditions. Cerebral palsy can occur prior to and after birth, but its most commonly associated with an injury sustained during labor and delivery. Specific causes are described below.

We urge all families in Grand Rapids that are coping with cerebral palsy diagnoses to peruse this information and the other Grand Rapids Cerebral Palsy Resources listed throughout our site. If you believe that medical malpractice may have played a role in your child’s cerebral palsy, don’t hesitate to contact our team of Grand Rapids cerebral palsy lawyers and professionals at Michigan Cerebral Palsy Attorneys. Reach out to our birth injury law firm in any of the following ways and our Grand Rapids cerebral palsy lawyers will provide you with a free legal consultation. Should we take your case, you will not be charged until our Grand Rapids cerebral palsy lawyers win or settle in your favor.

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Call our Grand Rapids cerebral palsy lawyers toll-free at (888) 592-1857

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Cerebral Palsy from Medical Malpractice in Grand Rapids, Michigan

Our Grand Rapids Cerebral Palsy Lawyers Discuss the Causes & Risk Factors for CP

Within the borders of Grand Rapids is the well-known “Grand Rapids Medical Mile.” This mile-long stretch of research institutions, medical centers, science centers, and a cutting-edge medical school, provides top-notch medical care to residents of the city of Grand Rapids as well as the region. Additionally, the area features fine physicians in well-respected hospitals such as Spectrum and Mercy St. Mary’s Health. Unfortunately, however, even the best physicians in the finest hospitals can still make medical errors.
When these errors involve the misdiagnosis or mismanagement of complications during pregnancy or labor and delivery, brain damage and cerebral palsy may occur. Some specific medical conditions are described below:

  • Intracranial hemorrhages (brain bleeds) may occur during a particularly difficult birth where there is excessive pressure or trauma to the baby’s delicate head. These bleeds occur within the skull and are very serious. Some of the specific causes of newborn brain hemorrhages are:
  • Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy (HIE), or birth asphyxia. When a baby experiences a lack of oxygen to the brain, a condition called hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy may occur. This is a type of brain damage and is one of the leading causes of cerebral palsy in kids. HIE occurs when complications like the ones below occur during labor and delivery and are not appropriately diagnosed and treated. Cerebral palsy from HIE may occur.
  • Umbilical cord problems like a nuchal cord (cord is wrapped around the baby’s neck); a prolapsed cord (the cord exits the birth canal before the baby and gets compressed, cutting off oxygen to the baby); or cord compression due to hyperstimulation (excessive uterine contractions).
  • Tachysistole (very frequent uterine contractions)
  • Problems with the placenta such as placenta previa (where the placenta attaches to the uterine wall close to or covering the cervix); placental abruption (where the placenta tears away from the uterus); and placental insufficiency.
  • Improper or lack of fetal monitoring during labor and delivery which results in a failure to recognize elevated fetal heart tones and oxygenation issues.
  • Delay in ordering or performing a necessary C-section.
  • Complications related to the baby’s size like macrosomia (big baby) or cephalopelvic disproportion (baby’s head is too large to fit through the mother’s pelvis)
  • Complications related to a baby’s position.
  • Undiagnosed or improperly treated conditions in the mother such as high blood pressure (preeclampsia) or infection.
  • Prematurity. Babies born before 37 weeks and weigh less than 3 ½ pounds have a 20 to 80 times greater risk for developing cerebral palsy than full-term babies. This is due to the fragility of their bodies. Doctors should make every effort to delay premature delivery of infants.
  • Maternal infections. A mother can transmit an infection to an unborn baby relatively easily through the birth canal and through the placenta. Maternal infections that go undiagnosed may have devastating effects on the baby. This can include infections like toxoplasmosis, cytomegalovirus, rubella, and herpes. It’s estimated that transplacental infections alone are responsible for about 5% to 10% of the cerebral palsy cases.
  • Untreated jaundice. Most people are aware of the yellowing of skin and the whites of the eyes that sometimes occurs in newborns when there is a build-up of bilirubin in the blood stream. However, many are unaware of the dangerous brain damage and subsequent cerebral palsy that may occur (kernicterus) if jaundice goes untreated.
  • Periventricular leukomalacia (PVL). PVL is the death or damage and softening of the white matter in the brain (the part that transmits information between the nerve cells and the spinal cord, as well as from one part of the brain to another). Several conditions can cause PVL: untreated hypotension (low blood pressure), hypoxemia (oxygen deficiency within the blood), infections, acidosis (high acidity of an unborn baby’s blood typically caused from a prolonged period without oxygen), and hypocarbia (decreased amount of carbon dioxide in the blood)/ overventilation in premature infants.

Signs Associated with Brain Damage and Cerebral Palsy

Often a baby will show signs of brain damage at birth. Other times, brain damage isn’t visible until later when the child fails to meet certain developmental and growth goals. Here are some conditions that are often a sign that brain injury and damage occurred:

  • Delayed crawling
  • Delayed developmental milestones
  • Delayed walking
  • Failure to thrive
  • Increased or decreased head size
  • Mental challenges
  • Seizures, at birth and/or during childhood
  • Hypotonia (Decreased muscle tone)
  • Poor head control
  • Poor trunk control
  • Psychomotor cognitive impairment
  • Roving eye movements
  • Low APGAR score

Any young child exhibiting these signs should be evaluated by physicians for confirmation of cerebral palsy and an appropriate treatment plan.

Legal Help for Cerebral Palsy (CP) in Grand Rapids, Michigan

Grand Rapids Cerebral Palsy Lawyers Making a Difference

Cerebral Palsy (CP) Legal Help in Grand Rapids, MichiganA cerebral palsy diagnosis can mean a lifetime of medical expenses. The Grand Rapids cerebral palsy lawyers at Michigan Cerebral Palsy Attorneys can help determine if your child’s cerebral palsy was caused by medical malpractice. If so, we’ll fight to obtain the money your family needs to cover medical costs, pain and suffering and more. Our Grand Rapids cerebral palsy lawyers have years of experience in fighting negligence in hospitals including Spectrum and Mercy Health St. Mary’s. Regardless of where you gave birth, if your child was a victim of medical negligence, we can help. We encourage you to contact our Grand Rapids cerebral palsy lawyers in one or both of the following ways:

Email our Grand Rapids cerebral palsy lawyers here

Call our Grand Rapids cerebral palsy lawyers toll-free at (888) 272-8891

To learn more about the specific resources available to individuals with cerebral palsy in Grand Rapids, we encourage you to reference our Grand Rapids Cerebral Palsy Resources page here.

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