A Parent’s Guide to Cerebral Palsy

According to the United Cerebral Palsy Association, almost one million Americans have Cerebral Palsy (CP).  For the individuals who suffer from CP, it is hard to control body movement due to birth injuries like brain damage. Since this disorder usually manifests before the age of three years old, CP not only affects the kids who are diagnosed with it, but also the parents of these children. Knowing more about what CP is, and some of its possible causes, can be crucial for a parent.

happy kids with disabilities in preschool

Understanding What It is
In general, CP is a term that encompasses a group of disorders that hinders an individual’s movement. CP is a non-progressive disorder, which means it does not worsen with time. It typically develops due to damage to the brain as it develops during pregnancy, during labor and delivery (this is where the link to our new obstetrical page should be!) or within the first couple years of birth. It is not uncommon for CP to lead to other impairments. These may include visual, hearing, learning, and speech handicaps, among others.

Possible Causes
Usually, the specific cause of CP is unknown for most individuals. However, research over the years has shown there are many possible causes that may cause a child to develop it. Infections that happen to the mother during pregnancy can cause damage to the developing brain of the fetus. In addition, the actual birthing process itself carries some complications that can cause CP. If a newborn incurs birth injuries related to the brain, or experiences significant oxygen deprivation during delivery, this can lead to CP. A serious case of jaundice caused by blood incompatibility between the mother and fetus can also contribute to its development. Referring to your trusted healthcare professional is a great way to understand more about these conditions.

For over forty years, the law firm of Pegalis & Erickson has been helping out families and individuals who have been the victim of unsafe healthcare practices. If your child has suffered from birth injuries that may be related to medical negligence, please do contact us at (516) 684-2900.After we talk with you, if necessary we can provide transportation to our Long Island office.

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