Massachusetts Cerebral Palsy Lawyer

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Cerebral Palsy (CP) is a congenital disorder, beginning before or during birth. Young children diagnosed with the disorder have had damage to the brain while still in the womb or complications during childbirth that cause the damage. Typically, the condition exists before or just after birth, but some cases are diagnosed in the first three years of a child's life. The disorder halts communications between the brain and other areas of the body, which results in difficulties with muscle control, movement, and speech. It varies in severity, but is not a progressive illness. Since it is typically caused by a single trauma to the brain, it usually does not worsen over time unless other complications, such as seizures, are not cared for. The disorder does, however, have long term ramifications, since CP is often accompanied by learning disabilities and cognitive impairments once a child reaches school age.

The amount of trauma inflicted on the brain can cause the symptoms to vary quite drastically. In its mildest form, it can simply cause difficulty controlling the muscles in one's hands. With proper physical and occupational therapy, control can be gradually restored. In its most severe form, it can render the person completely immobile. If the trauma was quite severe, then the person can become quadriplegic and lose the ability to communicate. It can also cause delayed cognitive development. There have been cases of 12-year-old children with CP who had the brain functions of a four-month-old baby.

Lack of prenatal care is a major cause, as complications with the developing fetus, such as malnutrition and infections, go unnoticed. At times, medical malpractice is the cause of such inadequate prenatal care, which can often be hard to determine. CP is also common among premature babies when time spent in the womb was insufficient for proper development. Moreover, premature babies are particularly sensitive to complications after birth, since they are so vulnerable to toxins. The birth process itself can be damaging to the baby, causing irreversible consequences.

If your child has been diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy, you should consult with an attorney. There is a good chance that there is someone at fault for this debilitating illness. You may be a victim of medical malpractice if:

Late or no recognition of fetal distress has occurred
Emergency c-sections are performed late, causing the baby to suffer from brain damage
Lack of adequate prenatal care that is consistent with hospital standards and common practices.
Failure to provide sufficient care during labor.
Incorrect and potentially life-threatening dosages of medications, harmful to the fetus.
Failure to monitor the newborn child after delivery and other negligent behaviors.
Failure to uphold implied consent policies by explaining any and all medical procedures and consequences of such actions prior to performing them.

If you suspect your child's injuries resulted from lack of sufficient medical care, you have the right to file a lawsuit. However, an attorney must be contacted in a timely manner because you face time constraints when attempting to convict a physician of malpractice. Statutes of limitations are laws designed to prevents hospitals and physicians from facing unlawful accusations. While these laws vary from state to state, they all follow standard guidelines. Massachusetts's statutes of limitations laws relative to medical malpractices and birth injuries state that claims must be filed within three years of the alleged action. There are instances when these laws are found unconstitutional, because some children with CP are not diagnosed until as late as three years of age. Therefore, Massachusetts upholds the discovery rule, allowing one to claim negligence within three years after initial discovery of the disorder. In order to gather evidence, locate expert testimonials, and retrieve appropriate documentation, three years is a short amount of time. Thus, it is important to contact an attorney to handle your case immediately if you have any suspicions.

The most important factor to remember when charging an individual with negligence is that your child's well-being is at stake. Medical bills take a toll on your finances, and you should never be left with these types of burdens when coping with the diagnoses of your child. An experienced and qualified birth injury attorney can help you seek justice, advocate for your child, and reach a reasonable settlement.


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