If your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy due to medical negligence during pregnancy or birth, our team may be able to help you. We understand the impact this condition can have on individuals and their families, and we strongly believe in holding medical professionals accountable for their negligence.
What is cerebral palsy?
Cerebral palsy is an injury to the brain causing problems with movement that you see in early childhood. Children often have poor coordination, stiff muscles, weak muscles and tremors. They can have problems with sensation, vision and hearing, swallowing and talking. You tend to notice babies with cerebral palsy do not roll over, crawl or walk compared to children of a similar age.
Cerebral palsy caused by medical negligence
One of the main causes of cerebral palsy is what we call a “hypoxic brain injury” during childbirth. This is where the baby’s brain gets starved of oxygen. Sometimes this cannot be prevented, or it is impossible to work out what has caused the baby to be injured.
However, negligent mistakes by doctors and midwives can lead to a child sustaining a hypoxic brain injury. Errors that can result in cerebral palsy medical negligence claims include:
- allowing labour to go on for too long
- not properly monitoring the baby’s heartbeat
- not doing enough cardiotocography (CTG) traces
- interpreting CTG traces incorrectly
- failing to respond to the umbilical cord being wrapped around the baby’s neck
- delaying a caesarean section
- missing signs of foetal distress such as meconium
If you’ve experienced any of the above with the birth of your child, you may be eligible to bring a cerebral palsy compensation claim. Call our clinical negligence solicitors today on 0808 164 0808 or request a call back, and we will call you.
Cerebral palsy FAQs
Below we have listed some frequently asked questions surrounding cerebral palsy birth injuries.
How many types of cerebral palsy are there?
There are four main recognised types of cerebral palsy:
- Spastic (Pyramidal) – this type of cerebral palsy affects more than 70% of patients. People with this form of the disorder will experience rigidness in their muscles and joints, which can make movement difficult and abnormal. Pyramidal cerebral palsy is a result of damage to the brain’s motor cortex.
- Athetoid (Extrapyramidal or Dyskinetic) – this type of cerebral palsy is much less common, only affecting approximately 10-20% of patients. Sufferers will experience movements that are out of their bodily control, such as sharp jerking and poor head control. Medical experts state Athetoid cerebral palsy is caused from a lack of oxygen at birth.
- Ataxic – patients with Ataxic cerebral palsy will experience tremors most commonly in their limbs, making it difficult to gain motor control. Walking can also be difficult, with patients adopting an abnormal gait. This type of cerebral palsy is a result of damage to the cerebellum.
- Mixed – this is essentially where patients experience symptoms of multiple cerebral palsy types. Typically, patients with a mixed form of the disorder usually display traits of Spastic and Athetoid; most commonly the muscle movements.
Does cerebral palsy affect brain function?
Not always. Some children who have cerebral palsy will only experience physical limitations with their motor skills, and will be unaffected cognitively.
But, there are still cases where children with cerebral palsy experience brain impairments. This can depend on the severity of the cerebral palsy, and could affect the following:
- decision making skills
- language skills and speech
- attention span
- emotional processing
- problem solving
If your child has this disorder as a result of medical negligence at birth, you may be eligible to make a compensation claim for cerebral palsy, especially if your child’s limitations and home adaptions have been sizeable. Contact us today on 0808 164 0808 or request a call back and we will call you.
What’s the average settlement for cerebral palsy claims?
All cerebral palsy settlements are different. This means it’s impossible to give an average in terms of settlement value.
The true amount of compensation depends on every individual scenario; whether a new vehicle is required for wheelchair access, whether home adaptations are required for disability assistance equipment, whether loss of earnings are taken into account for the parents, or even if they have paid for external carers to help at home.
What’s the cerebral palsy claim time limit?
If you are making a cerebral palsy claim for your child, you have until their 18th birthday to do so. If your child is over the age of 18, the cerebral palsy claim time limit will depend on the severity of their condition. If they cannot make the claim themselves, there is no time limit.
For children with cerebral palsy and the mental capacity to choose to make a claim themselves, they have until they are 21 to do so.
How our cerebral palsy lawyers can help
Raising a child with cerebral palsy is extremely difficult, and many families cannot afford the expensive and essential equipment, care assistance, education and home adaptations required to help the child live a fulfilling life. Our cerebral palsy compensation solicitors understand the importance of taking your child’s needs into account when presenting their compensation claim and we fight robustly to secure a settlement that is in their best interests.
Our cerebral palsy solicitors have regularly secured multi-million pound compensation awards. Our Head of Clinical Negligence, Robert Rose, is ranked as a Tier 1 expert in clinical and medical negligence in the legal directories. In 2010 he achieved one of the largest ever cerebral palsy compensation settlements for a child suffering from the disorder as a result of birth injuries.
We support cerebral palsy clients nationwide and often visit clients at their home or at hospital.
Do you need to discuss a cerebral palsy claim?
If you would like to discuss making a cerebral palsy compensation claim, please call our cerebral palsy solicitors on 0808 164 0808. Our Partners, Neil Clayton and Robert Rose, not only have extensive experience in this area but are also ranked in the Legal Directories. You can also visit our contact us page or request a call back, and we will call you.