Cerebral Palsy Attorneys in Westland, Michigan

At Michigan Cerebral Palsy Attorneys, our team of Westland cerebral palsy lawyers understands the considerable emotional, physical, mental, and social obstacles associated with a cerebral palsy diagnosis. We also understand how helpful some financial assistance can be when coping with costly medical and rehabilitative expenses. In this section, we’ll walk you through your loved one’s cerebral palsy diagnosis, explain how instances of medical malpractice can cause cerebral palsy, and point you in the direction of legal help.

Before digging into the details, it is important to first understand what cerebral palsy is. Cerebral palsy, often abbreviated to CP, is a grouping of non-life-threatening, non-progressive neurological conditions disturbing movement, coordination, balance, and motor function. When a child or infant suffers an injury to his or her developing brain, the result is typically lifelong brain damage, neurodevelopmental impairment, cerebral palsy, seizure disorders, or other associated conditions.

The brain injuries that result in cerebral palsy can occur any time during the brain’s development, but CP is most commonly associated with injuries inflicted around the time of labor and delivery. Medical professionals are required, as mandated by standards of care, to properly monitor, detect, control, and treat and of the possible complications that can lead to cerebral palsy. If your loved one suffered a birth injury that you believe was the result of medical negligence, our Westland cerebral palsy lawyers can help. Complete our contact form or call us toll-free at (888) 592-1857 and a member from our birth injury law firm will help you obtain the compensation you and your loved one need for a happy, health, and secure future.

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What Causes Birth-Related Brain Injury?

Our Westland Cerebral Palsy Lawyers Explain CP and Medical Malpractice

As any parent knows, it is a rare pregnancy that proceeds complication-free—medical professionals are expected to detect, diagnose, manage, and treat complications like preeclampsia, pre-term delivery, vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC), and nuchal cords so they don’t pose lasting threats to the mother and child. However, every year our Westland cerebral palsy lawyers handle cerebral palsy and birth injury cases that arise from the failure of medical professionals to manage common complications of pregnancy and delivery. In this section, we’ll discuss a few of the most prevalent pregnancy and delivery complications that, when handled incorrectly, may lead to cerebral palsy and birth injury:

Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE): Also referred to as birth asphyxia, hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy is a form of brain injury that occurs when the developing brain receives insufficient oxygen. HIE results in neurological damage, lifelong disabilities, cerebral palsy, and related conditions. Several conditions and complications of pregnancy and delivery can lead to hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy when left undiagnosed, unmanaged, or untreated. We’ve listed a few of these causes below:

  • Delayed emergency C-sections may result in situations that restrict oxygen flow to the baby and lead to cerebral palsy, HIE, or other forms of brain damage. When medical professionals fail to quickly order and perform C-section deliveries in cases of emergency, they seriously compromise the safety of both the mother and baby. Emergency C-sections may be necessary in cases of prolonged or distressed labor (failure to progress), hyperstimulation and strong contractions, uterine rupture, placental abruption, nuchal cords, and prolapsed or compressed umbilical cords.
  • Umbilical cord complications often cause HIE because the umbilical cord is responsible for transmitting nutrients, blood, and oxygen from the placenta to the baby. Nuchal cords, which occur when the umbilical cord wraps around the baby’s neck, limit oxygen flow to the baby’s brain and may cause birth asphyxia. Prolapsed umbilical cords occur when the umbilical cord enters the birth canal before the baby, and compressed umbilical cords occur when the umbilical cord becomes compressed between the baby and parts of the mother’s body.
  • Intracranial hemorrhages, also known as brain bleeds, are injuries in which bleeding within the skull destroys or damages the parts of the brain that control physical development and movement. Various forms of birth trauma are the leading cause of intracranial hemorrhaging—the following traumatic injuries are often inflicted around the time of labor and delivery:
    • Abnormal size and positioning may produce the complicated and dangerous vaginal birthing situations that lead to intracranial hemorrhaging. Macrosomic babies, babies that are larger than average for their gestational age, encounter cephalopelvic disproportion (CPD) when they are too large to fit easily through the birthing canal and pelvic region. However, CPD doesn’t only plague macrosomic babies—mothers with small pelvic bones or regions often require C-section deliveries because of size incompatibilities. Breech presentation, face presentation, and other abnormal fetal presentations also commonly lead to excessive pressure, pulling, or twisting of the infant’s head and neck.
    • Westland Cerebral Palsy Lawyers - Michigan Cerebral Palsy AttorneysThe incorrect use of labor and delivery assistance tools such as forceps and vacuum extractors may lead to intracranial bleeding in some situations when excessive force, compression, twisting, or pulling prompts head trauma.
    • Strong contractions and hyperstimulation result when labor and delivery fails to progress or from the incorrect use of labor induction drugs like Pitocin and Cytotec. Strong contractions and hyperstimulation produce rapid uterine contractions, and when the baby fails to progress through the birth canal, the result is often head trauma and intracranial hemorrhaging.
  • Uterine rupture: When the uterus tears open (usually in cases of VBAC), a baby risks HIE in two ways. For one, maternal blood loss restricts the flow of oxygenated blood to the baby, ultimately damaging the brain tissues. Furthermore, uterine ruptures can cause the placenta to separate from the mother’s circulation, ultimately reducing blood and oxygen flow to the baby. To reiterate, vaginal births after Cesarean deliveries (VBAC deliveries) increase a mother’s risk for uterine rupture and increase the baby’s risk for hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy because surgical scarring weakens the uterine lining.
  • Preeclampsia, or pregnancy-induced maternal high blood pressure, increases the likelihood of fetal hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy when the tightened placental blood vessels decrease blood flow to the baby. Physicians and medical professionals are obligated to diagnose and control preeclampsia in accordance with the standard of care.
  • Post-term pregnancies, which are pregnancies that extend beyond 37 gestational weeks, often cause birth asphyxia because the placenta’s function diminishes—when the placenta loses functional ability and surface area after 37 weeks of pregnancy, the fetus receives fewer nutrients and less oxygenated blood to the brain.
  • Fetal monitoring errors during delivery are a common cause of HIE—when medical professionals fail to properly interpret fetal distress through fetal heart rate tracings, they fail to detect emergency situations that necessitate medical intervention.

The aforementioned complications and conditions of pregnancy are just a few of the possible causes of hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy and cerebral palsy. Our Westland cerebral palsy lawyers also encourage you to refer to our complete list of causes and risk factors for cerebral palsy.

Cerebral Palsy Diagnosis, Signs, and Symptoms

As you’ll learn through your own experience or by reading our online resources, diagnosing cerebral palsy is often a complex process. Because the side effects and residual complications associated with CP vary, specialists agree that diagnosis should involve a handful of diverse medical professionals, consultants, and specialists.

To ensure your loved one receives an prompt, accurate cerebral palsy diagnosis, we’ve listed some of the basic signs and symptoms that typically indicate cerebral palsy. For reference, signs can be clinically measured, while symptoms are factors identified based on personal experience. For a more complete list of signs and symptoms, please reference our section on cerebral palsy signs and symptoms.

  • Seizures
  • Spasticity, spasms, tremors, or other involuntary movements
  • Difficulty feeding
  • Inability to control bladder and bowels
  • Gait abnormalities, including lopsided crawling and imbalance
  • Favoring one side of the body
  • Tenseness and irritability
  • Poor muscle tone; weakness
  • Failure to breathe immediately after birth
  • Delayed postural reactions
  • Problems with the senses, particularly hearing and vision

Cerebral Palsy Help

Westland Cerebral Palsy Lawyers Making a Difference

If your loved one was diagnosed with a birth injury that you believe was the result of medical malpractice, we encourage you to reach out to one of our experienced and passionate Westland cerebral palsy lawyers. The attorneys from our birth injury law firm understand how beneficial compensation from a successful malpractice lawsuit can be in the life of a child recovering from a birth injury. Contact us in the following ways and our Westland cerebral palsy lawyers will help you answer your legal questions:

Fill out our online contact form here

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

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