Phoenix Cerebral Palsy Attorneys
Helping Arizona families move forward after a birth injury changes everything
You love your child no matter what, but knowing that your child’s chances at his or her best life have dramatically changed due to medical errors can be overwhelming. The diagnosis can take a physical, emotional, and financial toll on the family, ad make life incredibly difficult for the child.
Here at Plattner Verderame, P.C., our Phoenix cerebral palsy injury lawyers are here to seek justice for your child. Our compassionate team of trial attorneys will work with you to help you find the resources you need, and fight on your behalf for the compensation your child deserves. If your child suffered a birth injury because of medical negligence, call us. We can help you figure out what your next steps are.
What is cerebral palsy?
Cerebral palsy (CP) is a group of neurological disorders which affect a person’s mobility. The condition varies in severity: some children may be able to walk, talk, attend school, and live a totally normal life. Others will require long-term, around-the-clock care for the rest of their lives. Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 1 in every 323 children have been diagnosed with CP.
Types of cerebral palsy
CP is categorized in four ways:
- Spastic, which affects about 80% of all people living with cerebral palsy. It is caused by increased muscle tone, which leads to stiffness.
- Dyskinetic, where the person’s muscle tone changes from loose to stiff. It makes controlling the movements of the arms and legs difficult.
- Ataxic, which affects balance and coordination.
- Mixed, which is a combination of two different types.
Depending on the type and severity, CP could affect your child’s ability to walk, talk, eat on his or her own, or swallow. It can affect your child’s cognitive abilities and his or her ability to learn, or result in blindness, deafness, or a seizure disorder.
What causes cerebral palsy?
There is no one cause of cerebral palsy, and it isn’t always easy to determine why your child developed the condition. The CDC estimates that 85% to 90% of all cases are congenital, and that most families are never given a true answer as to why their child developed the condition.
What we do know, however, is that there are certain factors which can lead to disruption in brain development. It is possible that any or all of these could have led to your child being diagnosed with CP:
- Undiagnosed infections
- Fetal stroke
- Oxygen deprivation
- Brain bleeds
- Brain injuries
- Breech birth
- Low birth weight
- Being one of multiples (twins, triplets, etc.)
- Premature birth
It is not always possible to diagnose cerebral palsy at birth. In fact, many children will only start to display symptoms of the condition a few months after they are born.
When is it possible to file a medical negligence lawsuit for my child’s CP injury?
Cerebral palsy can develop in a child at different times. Some children will experience brain damage while they are still in the womb, but it is a condition that can develop during the delivery, too. If a medical error led to your child’s cerebral palsy, you may be able to file a lawsuit seeking damages for your child. At Plattner Verderame, P.C., we will review your child’s medical records, interview witnesses, and investigate to see if an undiagnosed or untreated problem could have contributed to your child’s condition.
Examples of labor and delivery negligence leading to CP at a Phoenix area hospital
All medical professionals have a duty of care that is owed to their patients. They must make the best decisions during the labor and delivery to benefit both the mother and the infant. If they do not, both the mother and the child could suffer long-term repercussions.
While it is entirely possible that your child’s cerebral palsy could have been related to genetics, or to circumstances outside of anyone’s control, an act of labor and delivery negligence by a Phoenix doctor, midwife, nurse, or hospital staff member could be the catalyst. That negligence may take the form of:
- Failing to diagnose and/or treat a maternal infection
- Failure to run proper tests to ensure the baby was progressing well
- Failure to properly monitor the fetus during gestation
- Failure to diagnose and/or treat fetal distress, nuchal cord, or any condition that would lead to oxygen deprivation
- Failure to perform a timely c-section
- Negligent use of Pitocin or other labor drugs, leading to excessive contractions which injured the child
- Negligent use of forceps and/or vacuum extractors, leading to brain injury of the child
- Failure to monitor the child after he or she has been born
- Failure to diagnose and/or treat jaundice
If any of the situations occur, you may be able to file a claim.
Claiming damages for CP in Phoenix
If an act of negligence led to your child’s injuries, it is important that you seek legal counsel right away. In Arizona, you have two years from the date of your child’s birth injury to file a claim for damages. Because there is no cure for cerebral palsy, these damages will help you care your child for the rest of his or her life. You may be entitled to compensation for:
- Medical expenses, both current and future
- Lost wages for a family member who cared for the child
- Loss of future earning potential of your child
- Expenses related to adaptive technologies, such as wheelchairs or feeding tubes
- Pain and suffering
At Plattner Verderame, P.C., our Phoenix birth injury lawyers work with you at every step of the process. We offer practical, honest counsel to our clients while always keeping their best interests in mind. We invite you to contact us if you believe your child’s cerebral palsy was the result of negligence. We want to help.
Speak with a Phoenix cerebral palsy injury lawyer today
Plattner Verderame, P.C. offers comprehensive counsel to Arizona families whose lives have been turned upside because of a birth injury. If you have questions, we may have the answers. Please give us a call at 602-783-8793 today or fill out a contact form on our website. We offer free consultations and take cases on contingency.