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How Can Medical Malpractice Result in Infant Cerebral Palsy?

Cerebral palsy is a term used to describe a group of similar chronic disorders that damage the brain, affecting control of movement. Recognized as one of the most common causes of childhood disability, cerebral palsy affects more than 10,000 newly diagnosed infants every year.

Many different factors have been found to cause cerebral palsy, but when it comes to birth injuries, the condition often results from insufficient oxygen flow to the infant's brain (hypoxia) or body (asphyxia) during birth. A birth trauma or premature delivery can also cause cerebral palsy. While not always the case, these conditions sometimes stem from medical malpractice during delivery.

In most cases, medical care providers act with a great amount of skill and responsibility during a mother's labor and delivery. However, when medical malpractice is associated with a child's hindered development or cerebral palsy, the specific contributing factors tend to include the following:

  • Undetected or untreated infections occurring during pregnancy
  • Undetected prolapsed umbilical cord
  • Failure to monitor a fetal heart rate adequately before, during and after birth
  • Failure to plan or perform a Caesarean section appropriately if the baby is too large for a safe natural childbirth
  • Negligence when using instruments, such as forceps, during delivery

If a child is born with cerebral palsy, it does not necessarily mean that medical negligence played a role. However, if you suspect that your OB/GYN or other medical care provider's actions and decisions contributed to your child's cerebral palsy, you should consider your options for filing a malpractice claim. Consult a Chicago birth injury lawyer at Jeffrey M. Goldberg Law Offices for further information and

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