Rhode Island Cerebral Palsy Attorney
A newborn baby who suffers a birth injury due to negligence shares that same right to live and thrive just as any other child. Marasco & Nesselbush’s attorneys are dedicated to helping families obtain the personal and financial justice they deserve. We can assist families to recover monetary damages incurred from extensive medical care and treatment to help parents focus their time and energy on their child’s growth and development.
Although seeking legal advice can seem daunting, you can be assured that our lawyers treat each client with dignity, kindness, compassion, and respect while we pursue your birth injury claim. Our cerebral palsy lawyers work vigorously to advocate for the interests of our clients, seeking fair and maximum compensation for the preventable damages they suffered at the hands of others. Find out what your rights are by contacting one of our cerebral palsy lawyers for a free consultation.
What is Cerebral Palsy?
Cerebral palsy is a physical disability caused by a brain injury that affects a child’s movements and posture. Brain damage can occur due to abnormal development or physical injury before, during, or after birth. According to the CDC, cerebral palsy is the most common motor disability in childhood. Although cerebral palsy is not progressive, the condition is permanent and will affect the child’s entire life.
If your child has suffered a birth injury due to a practitioner’s negligence, we can explain your rights and help you assess the legal options available to you. Marasco & Nesselbush’s legal team is backed by decades of combined experience and expertise to assist you with your medical malpractice lawsuit. When we take legal action, we work tirelessly to build a strong medical malpractice case to hold negligent parties legally accountable.
Types of Cerebral Palsy
There are 4 main types of cerebral palsy, each with varying symptoms that are determined by the areas of the brain that were affected. These are classified according to the main movement disorder that is experienced.
Spastic Cerebral Palsy – This is the most common type of cerebral palsy, affecting 80 percent of people with the disability. Spastic Cerebral Palsy can affect the limbs, tongue, facial muscles, or vocal folds. Muscle tone is increased due to stiffness, causing uncontrolled or awkward movements.
Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy – A person may have problems controlling the movement of his or her hands, arms, feet, and legs, finding it difficult to sit and walk. Movements may be uncontrolled and can be slow and twisted, or rapid and jerky. Sometimes the face and tongue are affected, and the person can have a hard time sucking, swallowing, or talking. Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy can cause muscle tone to change from too tight to too loose.
Ataxic Cerebral Palsy – Ataxia refers to being ‘uncoordinated’ or ‘without order.’ A person might have problems with balance and coordination. He or she can have difficulty controlling the hands or arms, resulting in tremors or shaky movements.
Mixed Cerebral Palsy – A person may have symptoms of more than one type of cerebral palsy, the most common being Spastic-Dyskinetic cerebral palsy.
Diagnosis For Cerebral Palsy
Diagnosing cerebral palsy at an early age is crucial for the well-being of the child and his or her family. Cerebral palsy symptoms may not appear immediately, though most children will exhibit signs within the first 18 months. Common symptoms of cerebral palsy to watch for are delays in typical developmental milestones such as walking, crawling, or rolling over. An experienced doctor can recommend the necessary specialist(s) to assist with diagnosis.
There is no definitive test that can directly diagnose cerebral palsy. Therefore, the condition often requires time and observation to detect it. Since a child’s brain is still developing, symptoms may not present themselves until the child has passed these developmental stages.
For an accurate diagnosis, a doctor may follow these diagnosis steps:
- Developmental Monitoring –Monitor the child’s development for possible signs of impairment
- Developmental Screening – Screen for developmental delays, such as motor or movement difficulties
- Developmental and Medical Evaluations – Evaluate the motor skills, muscle tone, reflexes, posture, and medical history (This may include CT and MRI Scans)
Early diagnosis can greatly impact the amount of care a child receives, and timely treatment will often improve his or her future capabilities. If you notice delays in your child’s normal development, seek help from a trusted medical professional. They can help you access the services and support available to you.
Medical Malpractice Statute of Limitations
If your child is diagnosed with cerebral palsy, be sure to seek legal advice from a reputable Rhode Island cerebral palsy lawyer as soon as possible. The statute of limitations in the State of Rhode Island requires medical malpractice lawsuits to be filed no later than 3 years after the day of the incident.
On the other hand, there is an exception when negligence is only discovered within a reasonable amount of time after the injury occurred.
Obtaining legal representation without delay will ensure that you have the resources available to file your lawsuit within the permitted time limits. Contact us at Marasco & Nesselbush for a free legal consultation and an honest case evaluation.
Cerebral Palsy Caused by Medical Malpractice
Rhode Island medical professionals are responsible for monitoring both the mother and baby’s condition before, during, and shortly after the delivery process. Doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers involved should be aware of potential risks and quickly respond to signs that either the mother or baby are in distress. Unfortunately, when medical staff fails to provide the required level of care for a newborn, the consequences can lead to irreversible damage.
Cerebral palsy, when caused by damage to the brain before or during birth, is congenital, meaning the disorder was present at birth. Congenital cerebral palsy accounts for the majority of cerebral palsy cases (85–90 percent). A brain injury that occurs more than 28 days after birth, and during a child’s developmental stage, is referred to as acquired cerebral palsy.
One known cause of cerebral palsy is Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE). This type of dysfunction occurs when there is a significant loss of blood and oxygen flow to a baby’s brain during pregnancy or childbirth. The length of time the brain was without oxygen usually determines the severity of damage and which areas were affected.
Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy may result from some of the following complications:
- Unusually long labor
- Umbilical cord prolapse (loss of oxygen flow)
- Wrong fetal position
- Placental damage or bleeding
Negligence during prenatal care, delivery, or postnatal care, can cause serious birth injuries resulting in cerebral palsy. Examples of medical malpractice that can result in cerebral palsy include:
- Misreading prenatal scans
- Failure to monitor mother and child properly
- Inappropriate use of forceps or vacuum extractors
- Delaying or failure to perform a c-section
- Surgical errors or negligence during a c-section
- Mismanagement of shoulder dystocia
- Negligence during labor and the delivery process
- Improper response to signs of fetal distress
- Failure to provide a proper examination of the newborn
- Inappropriate handling of a child during delivery
- Failure to manage placenta and umbilical cord problems appropriately
Parents entrust their baby to the hands of healthcare professionals with the expectation that they will provide a high standard of care. So when concerns are raised over the quality of care their baby received, feelings of anger and frustration are well justified.
If you believe your child’s cerebral palsy is the result of a birth injury caused by a medical professional’s negligence, our lawyers can investigate to determine who is at fault and advise you of your options to file a medical malpractice lawsuit.
Marasco & Nesselbush’s Rhode Island cerebral palsy lawyers have extensive knowledge and expertise dealing with birth injury lawsuits caused by malpractice. We strive to get justice for families whose lives have been adversely affected by the mistakes of healthcare workers. Contact us for your free consultation today.
Long-Term Effects For Children With Cerebral Palsy
When a child is diagnosed with cerebral palsy, it can be overwhelming for the family to realize the implications it may have on their child’s life and future. Cerebral palsy is a life-long condition with no known cure, often requiring ongoing medical care and therapy throughout the child’s life. This can have a significant impact on the child’s wellbeing, placing emotional and financial strain on the family.
Children with cerebral palsy may suffer from a variety of disabilities and long-term effects. Some of these include:
- Difficulty walking, sitting, or standing
- Delays in speech development
- Problems with vision
- Hearing impairment
- Tremors or involuntary movements
- Spinal and joint issues
- Intellectual and cognitive disabilities
- Emotional and behavioral issues
- Difficulty feeding, swallowing, sucking
- Seizures or convulsions
Many children who are born with cerebral palsy may have additional conditions, known as co-occurring conditions. The CDC states that about 4 in 10 children with cerebral palsy also have epilepsy and about 1 in 10 have autism spectrum disorder.
Though it can be overwhelming wondering what kind of future awaits a child with cerebral palsy, there is help available for parents whose baby has suffered a birth injury. With the appropriate services and support, children diagnosed with cerebral palsy can maintain active, healthy lives, and look to the future with hope.
Obtaining the financial compensation a family deserves can assist them in accessing the medical care, treatment, and rehabilitation their child needs for future development. Our Rhode Island cerebral palsy attorneys provide quality legal work, attention to detail, and a high standard of ethics to deliver extraordinary results for our clients.
Contact a Trusted Rhode Island Cerebral Palsy Lawyer
For Positive Assistance Today
Marasco & Nesselbush is one of the top medical malpractice law firms in Rhode Island. Our cerebral palsy lawyers have successfully handled many birth injury cases and secured fair compensation for clients. Our personal injury lawyers can investigate the circumstances surrounding your child’s birth injuries and obtain the necessary proof needed to build a strong case.
We possess extensive knowledge of medical malpractice litigation in the State of Rhode Island and maintain an unwavering commitment to quality legal work, attention to detail, and extraordinary results.
As Rhode Island’s trusted medical negligence law firm, we have a team of cerebral palsy attorneys that can provide the resources and expertise to guide you through the complex legal process governing medical malpractice.
Marasco & Nesselbush’s cerebral palsy attorneys strive to ensure that those responsible for medical negligence are held accountable for their actions. Our goal is to obtain the best possible outcome for you as our client, recognizing your need for peace of mind and the opportunity to move forward with your life.
To find out more about your rights and options, call our firm today at 401-443-2999 or complete a contact form for a free consultation.