Understanding Cerebral Palsy

Raising a child suffering from cerebral palsy can be very painful, difficult and costly for any family. This brain disorder can either partially or totally eliminate a child’s capability to perform and actively participate in fun-filled activities and, depending on the severity of the disorder, but a severe type of cerebral palsy will definitely require medical care for rest of the child’s life.

Cerebral palsy is an umbrella term that is used to describe a group of incurable and chronic brain disorders that impair a child’s motor skills, coordination, balance and mental abilities. These result to
abnormal muscle tone and reflexes, problems with movement, insufficient muscle growth, misaligned joints, deformities in bones, extreme fatigue due to movement and walking, difficulties in breathing, language and speech, feeding and swallowing difficulties, learning disabilities, cognitive impairment and so forth.

More than 500,000 children are currently suffering from this injury, which may be congenital or acquired in nature, and about 10,000 more acquire it every year. Besides that fact that cerebral palsy is currently the most common neurodevelopmental motor disability in children, it is also most often a result of medical malpractice due to negligence.

There are four major forms of cerebral palsy, each being based on the specific effects of this disorder:

  • Spastic cerebral palsy, which is the most common form suffered by patients has five sub-forms which include: diplegia, wherein both legs get impaired more usually than both arms; quadriplegia, the most severe form of spastic cerebral palsy because it impairs all four limbs; hemiplegia, which affect the limbs on one side of the body; monoplegia, wherein only one limb is affected: and, triplegia which affects three limbs.
  • Athetoid cerebral palsy or dyskinetic cerebral palsy, which is characterized by slow and involuntary, writhing of the hand, arm or leg, as well as unconscious drooling and facial grimaces.
  • Ataxic cerebral palsy, which is characterized by difficulty in maintaining balance and tremors or shaky movements. A child suffering from ataxic cerebral palsy can be viewed as clumsiness or jerky.
  • Mixed cerebral palsy is a combination of any two forms of cerebral palsy in a patient. The most common combination, though, is spastic and athetoid.

Victims of medical malpractice resulting in cerebral palsy have legal rights that may entitle them to receive compensation for all the damages due to the injury. For better understanding, click here to learn more about cerebral palsy.