A group of disorders that work against the body simultaneously, known collectively as cerebral palsy, affects more than three quarters of a million people in the United States, including those in the St. Petersburg area, and, on average, 8,000 new cases are diagnosed in infants each year.
This topic has been one of interest in the field of personal injury law for quite some time as it was discovered that one of the causes is loss of oxygen to the brain during delivery. Another reason for the contraction of these disorders is an infection present in the mother when she gives birth.
In a recent court case, the courts sided with two doctors brought to trial by the parents of Ronald Cachia. The child was diagnosed with cerebral palsy and the parents insisted that the doctors acted with negligence during the delivery.
Unfortunately for the parents, as long as the doctors’ actions coincide with what is considered the normal and accepted procedure, they are not at fault. A professional obstetrician agreed, under oath, that the doctors had done nothing unusual or uncalled for during the birth.
As a result, the courts did not find the doctors guilty, ruling that the loss of connection to the placenta during birth had been the cause of the cerebral palsy and was accidental. However, not all cases similar to this have resulted in the same outcome. The wrong move by a doctor in delivery can, in fact, result in this serious and lifelong condition, which is why parents are wise to consult a personal injury attorney if their child is diagnosed.
The symptoms of cerebral palsy can be very mild or horribly severe depending on the individual circumstances. They include muscles that lack elasticity resulting in an abnormal gait, tight or stiff joints, muscle weakness, tremors, lack of coordination, speech problems, seizures, and chronic pain, among other problems. In babies, the condition is often suspected if the infant has excessive drool, irregular breathing, slowed growth patterns, or difficulty feeding.
It is a very serious condition that should be monitored by medical professionals in Saint Petersburg and elsewhere throughout the person’s lifetime.