Cerebral palsy is a condition that affects body movement and co-ordination and can result from mismanaged medical treatment either before, during or after birth.

Cerebral palsy is characterised by abnormal or deficient control of movement and posture. Symptoms can vary substantially, affecting one set of limbs (either legs or arms), or all limbs. Communication, perception and vision can also be affected by the condition.

Symptoms can vary substantially and cerebral palsy compensation claims are sometimes complex and are rarely concluded quickly, so it’s important to work with a legal team that is right for you.

How is cerebral palsy caused?

Most cerebral palsy cases are linked to factors during pregnancy. These include:

  • Prematurity
  • Intrauterine growth restriction or infection
  • Foetal coagulation disorders
  • Multiple pregnancy
  • Breech presentation
  • Chromosomal or congenital anomalies
  • Maternal infection during pregnancy (including periventricular leukomalacia)

Some cases of cerebral palsy are triggered by things that happen after birth, such as contracting an infection or meningitis. Cerebral palsy can also occur during labour, where the baby has been starved of oxygen (hypoxia) for too long during delivery and this can be down to medical negligence.

Cerebral palsy and medical negligence

If your child developed cerebral palsy as a result of medical negligence then we can assist you in bringing a claim.

The most common medical negligence claim is for compensation for the effects of avoidable hypoxia which occurred during delivery. However, cases can involve injuries that have been caused in other ways. For example, it may be the delayed diagnosis and treatment of maternal infection causing brain injury to an unborn child; or delay in diagnosis and treatment of an infection such as meningitis in a young infant, causing brain injury.

To win a claim for medical negligence you would need to prove that had the medical staff done things properly then the cerebral palsy would probably not have developed.

How easy is it to win a cerebral palsy case like this?

Cerebral palsy claims can be very complex and often require the involvement of a number of medical experts in different specialisms. It is essential that you have a solicitor on your side who will understand the complexities of the claim and your needs as a family.

Why Metcalfes?

We have a wealth of experience in dealing with the highly complex cerebral palsy claims from single-limb paralysis, to quadriplegia, to cognitive deficiency. We work with medical experts from different fields to establish how the condition came about and whether medical professionals were at fault.

Our expert knowledge, clear guidance and sensitive approach has earned our medical negligence solicitors a reputation for getting the best results for clients. 

We can help you and your family to find the answers you need and help you win compensation to pay for the very best rehabilitative care and support that your child needs for the future.

To find out more information, contact our specialist medical negligence team on 0117 239 8012, or email us using the online contact form.

Cerebral palsy claim - case study

AB – v – NHS Trust

AB is a child who suffered a severe brain injury at birth, resulting in cerebral palsy. This was caused due to negligent maternity care that resulted in his delivery being delayed longer than it should have been, causing severe deprivation of oxygen to his brain at birth.

As a result, AB is unable to walk or dress independently and will be unable to carry out self-care tasks independently for the remainder of his life. He has severe learning disabilities and will be unable to manage his own affairs in the future. AB also suffers from epileptic seizures at night requiring a carer to remain awake with him at night to ensure his safety. AB is unable to attend mainstream schooling and will need additional care during school hours, over and above that provided by the local authority. AB will be unlikely to find suitable employment as a result of his disability and his life expectancy was also likely to be reduced. AB required 24-hour-a-day care for the rest of his life and would remain wholly reliant on others for all aspects of his day-to-day living.  He would benefit from specialist aids and equipment and adapted accommodation to facilitate the greatest enjoyment out of life.

AB was awarded £7,000,000 compensation as a result of the hospitals negligence.

Our client's mother also received damages as a result of the psychological injury she sustained, because of what happened to her child at birth.

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