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Cerebral palsy often leads to missed milestones

On Behalf of | Mar 12, 2024 | Professional Malpractice |

Cerebral palsy is a disorder sometimes suffered by children when there are complications during birth. If these complications – such as a mistake made by a doctor or the umbilical cord being wrapped around the child’s neck – lead to a lack of oxygen, then it can affect brain development. The resulting condition is known as cerebral palsy.

The symptoms can vary depending on the case, but children may have trouble with muscle control, they may have issues with cognitive abilities and they may experience delayed development. In many cases, issues will only affect one side of the body, such as a child having stiff muscles and jerky movements on one side but smooth and efficient movements on the other. Muscle tone may also be different in that it is more taut and rigid. 

When will parents notice?

What this means is the children often start missing milestones. A child doesn’t start to crawl when their pediatrician expects them to, or they don’t develop language skills at the same time as their peers. Maybe they struggle to walk on time or they do not roll over when parents anticipate that they will.

In many cases, parents aren’t immediately aware of cerebral palsy. A doctor could make a mistake during the delivery that leads to oxygen deprivation and brain damage. But the parents may not even notice until their child is a year or two old and begins missing important milestones. This can lead to a significant delay in the diagnosis, complicating the situation. 

When parents do believe that a doctor’s error was responsible, they need to understand that they may have a right to financial compensation, and they must know what legal steps to take.