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What is cerebral palsy?

Awaiting the birth of a child is supposed to be filled with excitement and preparation. Yet, many Louisianans find themselves concerned about the health of their baby-to-be, and for good reason. Although medical professionals are typically well-trained and educated, they can still make mistakes that result in devastation for newborns and their parents.

One tragic result of substandard medical care during birth is cerebral palsy. There are multiple causes of cerebral palsy, but some of the more common causes are traumatic head injury and lack of oxygen. Both of these situations can occur when medical professionals fail to safely deliver a newborn. The condition, which is defined as a disorder of movement, posture or muscle tone, can have drastic effects on a child's health and well-being.

These effects of cerebral palsy can touch many motor skills. A sufferer may have a posture that is too stiff or too loose, muscle coordination problems, involuntary muscle movement, slow body movements, difficulty swallowing, speech delays and seizures. Sadly, there is no cure for cerebral palsy, so sufferers often have to acquire long-term care to meet their needs. This can be challenging and costly.

Fortunately, families affected by birth injuries may have legal options available to them to recover the compensation they need to cover their damages. Doing so typically requires having knowledge of the legal system and how to pursue as much compensation as possible. A qualified legal professional who is adept at handling legal and evidentiary issues can help families better understand how the law applies to their situation and what they need to do to put forth the best claim possible under the circumstances. Many legal professionals who handle birth injury cases understand the long-term implications of cerebral palsy, and will do everything in their power to ensure that the injured child and their family's best interests are fully represented.

Source: Mayo Clinic, "Cerebral Palsy," accessed on Nov. 11, 2016

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Tauzin & Lorio, Attorneys at Law
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