Birth-Injury-Related Cerebral Palsy

For most parents, the birth of a child is an exciting and joyous experience. But nowdays, 3 to 4 percent of newborns suffer from birth-related injuries. In the United States, cerebral palsy has become a serious birth-related injury which affects 5,000 to 10,000 infants each year.

There are different types of birth-related injuries that may happen before, during, or after the birth of a child. Although there are several types of birth injuries, one of the most popular and common type of birth injury is cerebral palsy.

Rather than a disease, cerebral palsy in newborn infants is a physical condition that is caused by brain damage before, during, or after birth. There are four different types of cerebral palsy: spastic cerebral palsy, ataxic cerebral palsy, athetoid cerebral palsy, and mixed cerebral palsy. Each type of cerebral palsy has its own characteristics. Of the four types of cerebral palsy, spastic cerebral palsy is the most common type. It accounts for eighty percent of all cases today in the United States.

Birth injury-related cerebral palsy is usually caused by birth asphyxia (lack of oxygen during the birth process), a complex condition which is difficult to predict or prevent.

Premature birth, low birth weight, hemorrhage in the child's brain, an infection or illness in the mother like rubella, toxoplasmosis; intrauterine exposure to drugs or alcohol are other reasons for birth injury related cerebral palsy.

Even though doctors and nurses are trained to identify symptoms of cerebral palsy, in most cases they fail to recognize the problem of brain injury in newborn infants. This failure may lead to birth injury related cerebral palsy. When cerebral palsy is caused due to birth injury (negligence), it becomes a case of medical malpractice. The parents of victims can claim for compensation for life long care. With the help of a cerebral palsy lawyer, victims can easily win compensation for medical malpractice.