Cerebral Palsy and Birth Injury Lawsuits
In most situations, cerebral palsy is the result of a genetic mutation or delivery complications that are not preventable. However, in some cases, medical negligence can also result in this devastating condition. When a medical provider’s negligence results in a birth injury, including cerebral palsy, a lawsuit may be filed by the family to seek compensation for medical expenses and other damages.
Cerebral Palsy and Medical Malpractice
Medical negligence is when a healthcare provider fails to meet a specific standard of care that is determined by other medical providers. If a child’s injuries result in cerebral palsy due to any of the following, the family could have grounds for a lawsuit for medical malpractice:
- Failure to monitor – Medical providers are required to ensure that the baby is in stable condition before, during, and after the delivery. This includes monitoring the heartbeat and oxygen levels of the baby. A heart rate that is abnormal could indicate that the child is failing to get adequate oxygen to their brain. Failing to monitor a child’s vital signs and taking adequate intervention could result in an injury to the child.
- Failure to perform a c-section – If vital signs indicate that the baby is struggling, a c-section delivery may be the safest form of delivery to prevent brain damage. When issues arise, the physician only has minutes to decide if a c-section is necessary. Failing to notice the signs of a needed c-section or performing the c-section in a timely manner may cause the baby to develop cerebral palsy and could result in a medical malpractice lawsuit.
- Improper response to distress of the fetus – When a woman is pregnant or giving birth, medical emergencies may arise such as the umbilical cord getting wrapped around the baby’s neck. Failing to have a quick, adequate response by medical providers may result in cerebral palsy and a possible claim for a birth injury lawsuit.
Most children will exhibit the signs of cerebral palsy at an early age. They often have delays in milestones such as crawling, walking, or rolling over. The types of movement that are affected will depend on which part of the brain was damaged.
Damages in a Birth Injury Lawsuit
Although a lawsuit can’t take away the condition of your child, it can help with the financial burden for present and future medical expenses. Children with cerebral palsy often need long-term medical care that may include physical or occupational therapy, speech therapy, medications, corrective surgeries, orthotics and braces, walkers and/or wheelchairs, and verbal aids just to name a few.
Florida laws also allow families to seek compensation for loss of future wages and future living expenses. There is a statute of limitations, or time limit, for filing a birth injury lawsuit, so it is imperative that you contact a birth injury attorney as quickly as possible.
Contact a Birth Injury Attorney Today
Having a child be injured at birth can be devastating to a family. The Florida attorneys at Leifer Law Firm can advise you of your legal options and ensure that your rights are protected so you get the compensation that you are entitled to. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.