Cerebral Palsy is a term given to a condition that results from a brain injury; or an abnormality that might have occurred during the foetal development, or at the time of birth. At times, this might occur within the initial months of the life of the infant or immediately after birth.
Even though medical science has advanced to a very high level, doctors have yet not fully understood the causes of early brain damage. However, some of the identified causes of cerebral palsy are listed below:
The maternal infections tend to increase the risks of cerebral palsy to a great extent and this may also include the urinary tract infections, bladder or kidney infections, and rubella, sepsis i.e. an infection of the blood stream, uterus infection and toxoplasmosis. It is believed that all maternal infections can be prevented and dealt with, so as to avoid the occurrence of cerebral palsy . Hence, all pregnant women are advised to seek medical treatment from their gynaecologist to avoid such risks.
Prenatal or neonatal infections too have the potential to augment the risk of cerebral-palsy . These are inclusive of bacterial meningitis, viral encephalitis, Group B streptococcal infection, Herpes Group B and sepsis. The direct affect of these infections have not been verified yet, but these prenatal infections may result in preterm birth which poses a risk of developing cerebral-palsy . These infections may also result in brain damage; RH incompatibility and jaundice may also add to the causes of cerebral-palsy .
Premature birth and low birth weight increase the risks of cerebral-palsy to a great extent. Babies who are born before the expected time are highly vulnerable and it is more likely that they suffer through various health complications. Stress, infections, preterm labour and multiple births; smoking and alcohol usage; and uterine infections may also contribute to the occurrence of cerebral-palsy .
Cerebral palsy may also occur due to the failure of the medical staff in preventing a birth injury. This includes the misdiagnosis and maltreatment of maternal infections; the failure of recognition of foetal distress; not being able to perform a C-section in an organized and timely manner; not treating jaundice and not ensuring sufficient oxygen supply. It also includes the failure of proper use of medical equipments like forceps.
Medical malpractice can be highly devastating as it might be a probable cause of cerebral palsy ; therefore, it is advised to file a lawsuit, so as to be able to acquire compensation for the treatment costs and other losses as well.
Lastly, if you had a complicated labour and your newborn infant is found to be suffering from cerebral palsy , you are suggested to file for compensation of medical malpractice as the financial help would make the alleged doctor realize the extent of his/her negligence and in the future, he/she should be diligent while performing his/her duty of care. It would also give you an instinctive satisfaction by making the responsible person suffer for the suffering, pain and loss that you and your child have gone through.