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Cerebral Palsy Lawyers

infant hand holding adult thumbLong Island cerebral palsy attorneys serving Nassau, Suffolk & New York City.

If you believe negligence on the part of a doctor, nurse or other healthcare practitioner led to your child’s diagnosis of cerebral palsy, the Long Island birth injury lawyers at the firm of Edelman, Krasin & Jaye are available for a free and comprehensive consultation about your legal rights.

Cerebral palsy is a category of neurological disorders resulting in problems with movement and muscular coordination. While the cause of cerebral palsy is not always evident, medical malpractice is sometimes to blame. In such cases, parents face the daunting task of coping with the complexities of the legal system to gain the compensation they require for their child’s injury. In times like these, choosing the right legal representatives can make the difference between holding responsible parties liable for a lifetime’s worth of medical treatments, and going home empty-handed.

If you believe that your child’s cerebral palsy is due to medical malpractice on the part of delivery room doctors or nurses, or any other healthcare professional, the Long Island medical malpractice lawyers at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye have the expertise and resources to help you take full advantage of your legal rights. Our in-house medical research support staff will meticulously review all medical records related to your child’s injury to uncover any and all evidence of wrongdoing on the part of hospital personnel or healthcare workers.

The cost of living with cerebral palsy can reach the many millions of dollars over a lifetime. By exercising your right to file a medical malpractice lawsuit in Nassau or Suffolk counties, you can obtain monetary compensation to ensure the highest possible quality of life for your child. Contact Edelman, Krasin & Jaye today for a complimentary case evaluation. Remember, we charge no fees unless we win your case.

Early signs, diagnosis and causes of cerebral palsy

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that children are born with cerebral palsy at a rate of 3.3 out of 1000. It may not be clear immediately after birth that a child has cerebral palsy. However, typically signs (including developmental delays, unusually lax or rigid muscle tone, or lopsided posture and/or gait) are evident in the first few months of life. A physician will likely order some form of brain imaging (such as a cranial ultrasound) to make a more definitive diagnosis.

Cerebral palsy occurs when the parts of the brain that control movement are compromised due to damage, interrupted development in utero, bleeding (generally caused by fetal stroke), or lack of oxygen (asphyxia) to the brain. The majority of children who have the condition are born with it. Though the cause is not clear in every case, there are a number of possibilities.

Possible cause of cerebral palsy:

  • Genetic abnormalities
  • Congenital brain malformations
  • Maternal illnesses or conditions
  • Fetal injury
  • Problems during labor and delivery

Risk factors and risk management

There are some known risk factors for a baby developing cerebral palsy, including:

  • Maternal infection during pregnancy
  • Blood incompatibility between mother and child during pregnancy
  • Exposure to toxic substances
  • Birth in the breech position
  • Complications during labor and delivery
  • Low birth weight or small weight for gestational age
  • Premature or multiple birth
  • An infant who has seizures

Though these and other factors increase the risk of cerebral palsy, many infants in such categories will be perfectly healthy. In some cases, as when the cause is a genetic abnormality, cerebral palsy cannot be prevented. However, some risk factors can be dealt with quite effectively, either through prevention (e.g. through vaccination of the mother against rubella, or German measles) or early detection and management (e.g. in the case of blood incompatibility).

Cerebral palsy and liability issues

There are some children whose cerebral palsy was caused through medical negligence or malpractice. For example, if a doctor provided inadequate monitoring during pregnancy or neglected to treat an illness that increased the risk of a child developing cerebral palsy, that doctor could be liable. A doctor would also be liable for mishandling certain aspects of labor and delivery in ways that resulted in asphyxia or brain injury.

Examples of birth injury malpractice include improper monitoring of mother and child, delaying or neglecting to perform a cesarean section when there was a clear need for such a procedure, or causing injury through the improper use of forceps.

Of course, litigation is not the right choice for everyone. If you believe that your child may have cerebral palsy due to medical malpractice or negligence, contact the birth injury attorneys at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye to discuss whether filing a cerebral palsy lawsuit on Long Island is the right course of action for you and your family.

Life with cerebral palsy: challenges and treatment

Unfortunately, there is no cure for cerebral palsy. A child with cerebral palsy may have a host of medical issues to cope with over the course of a lifetime.

Complications from cerebral palsy include:

  • Problems with movement and muscle tone
  • Delays in growth and development
  • Mental impairment and learning difficulties
  • Seizures
  • Deformities of the spine
  • Arthritis
  • Vision and hearing problems
  • Speech problems
  • Poor bladder control
  • Pain or sensitivities
  • Malnutrition
  • Dental problems
  • Excessive drooling

However, treatment can mitigate some of symptoms, helping those who live with the condition to enjoy a fuller life. Treatments may include physical, occupational, recreation, and speech therapy. In some cases, drugs, surgeries, or special equipment can also provide relief or assistance. Such interventions are necessary to help a developing child move, function, cope, and communicate so as to live as productive and happy a life as possible.

Compensation for victims of medical malpractice

Compensation for medical malpractice may be available through a lawsuit against the liable parties. Compensation covers medical and therapeutic costs, any necessary special care, diminished earning potential, and pain and suffering.

The amount of compensation will vary depending on the nature of the medical negligence as well as the severity of the child’s condition. However, given that a child with cerebral palsy faces a lifetime of serious challenges, jury settlement can be substantial. Some cerebral palsy settlements in New York have approached 100 million dollars.

How our Long Island cerebral palsy lawyers can help

Obtaining compensation for your injury in a court of law can be a challenging and complicated matter. The plaintiff in a NY medical malpractice lawsuit needs to provide evidence of liability, a task complicated by the fact that cerebral palsy is sometimes diagnosed only months or years after birth. If you believe that your child’s cerebral palsy was caused by mistakes on the part of medical personnel in Nassau, Suffolk, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, Manhattan or the Bronx, the personal injury attorneys at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye can help you fight for justice. Call us today at 516-742-9200 for a free consultation. Our client’s success is our success!

  1. NINDS, Cerebral Palsy: Hope Through Research, http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/cerebral_palsy/detail_cerebral_palsy.htm 
  2. NYTimes, Cerebral Palsy, http://www.nytimes.com/health/guides/disease/cerebral-palsy/ 
  3. HuffPost, Family Gets $58 Million In Record-Breaking Malpractice Suit, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/05/26/malpractice-record_n_867439.html
  4. AJOG, Adverse obstetric events are associated with significant risk of cerebral palsy, http://www.ajog.org/article/S0002-9378(10)00582-X/abstract