A recent study found malnutrition and epilepsy are frequently present in kids who have cerebral palsy and states that the children should be carefully evaluated and the condition managed by their doctors and families. The study titled “High rates of malnutrition and epilepsy: two common comorbidities in children with cerebral palsy,” was published in the Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences.
Cerebral palsy may be caused by birth injuries such as brain trauma or lack of oxygen during labor and delivery. Cerebral palsy is characterized by abnormal muscle tone, postural control and motor function. Patients show varying levels of impairment when it comes to behavior, perception and cognition. They may have seizures and suffer from malnutrition.
Severe Malnutrition is an Issue
According to the study, malnutrition is prevalent among children with cerebral palsy. This is because of poor food intake that is caused in these children by gastrointestinal disorders, including oral motor dysfunction, constipation and gastroesophageal reflux. It may also occur due to the severity of the condition, cognitive and motor deficits and use of anti-epileptic medications.
The study involved a total of 197 children with cerebral palsy. Researchers evaluated the children’s nutritional status using the Gomez classification of weight-for-age and their motor function based on the Gross Motor Function Classification System. Results showed that overall, malnutrition was the most prevalent condition among the children followed by epilepsy.
More than half of the children with epilepsy had spastic quadriplegia, which means all four of their limbs are affected. Severe malnutrition was seen in about 35 percent of patients and only one in five patients had a normal weight. Researchers said the awareness of families and doctors about the nutritional issues experienced by children with cerebral palsy should be increased so these problems can be better managed.
Cerebral Palsy and Birth Injuries
When the child’s brain is traumatized during birth, for example, due to excessive force on the part of the obstetrician or if the child’s oxygen supply is cut off because of other complications that might arise during a difficult labor and delivery, the resulting birth injuries may potentially result in cerebral palsy. This is a lifelong condition that results in permanent disabilities.
A number of these birth injuries that occur during labor and delivery can and should be prevented by early intervention and proper fetal monitoring. When risk factors are present, a Cesarean section may help deliver the baby safely. When a birth injury is caused by a doctor or by a medical professional’s negligence (carelessness) or wrongdoing, the at-fault parties including the doctor, medical staff, technicians and/or hospital, etc. may be held accountable. Plaintiffs in such cases can seek compensation for damages including, but not limited to, medical expenses, lost income and benefits, hospitalization, permanent injuries, disabilities, past and future pain and suffering, etc.
Filing a Cerebral Palsy Lawsuit
If your child suffers from cerebral palsy as the result of medical negligence, the experienced New York personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Kenneth A. Wilhelm can help you better understand your legal rights and options, and also fight hard to recover just compensation for you.
We have seen many cases where New York City Health and Hospital Corporation hospitals deliver babies who are born with cerebral palsy or erb’s palsy stemming from negligence and/or medical malpractice in the labor and delivery etc. of the children. The following list identifies some of these hospitals (operated by New York City Health and Hospital Corporation):
• Jacobi Hospital aka Bronx Municipal 1400 Pelham Parkway South Bronx, New York 10461 718-918-5000
• Lincoln Hospital 234 East 149th Street Bronx, New York 10451 718-579-5000
• North Central Bronx Hospital 3424 Kossuth Avenue Bronx, New York 10467 718-519-5000
• Coney Island Hospital 2601 Ocean Parkway Brooklyn, New York 11235 718-616-3000
• Kings County Hospital 451 Clarkson Avenue Brooklyn, New York 11203 718-245-3131 BIGGEST HOSPITAL IN THE WORLD
• Woodhull Hospital 760 Broadway Brooklyn, New York 11206 718-963-8000
• Bellevue Hospital 462 First Avenue New York, New York 10016 212-562-5555
• Harlem Hospital 506 Lenox Avenue New York, New York 10037 212-939-1000
• Metropolitan Hospital 1901 First Avenue New York, New York 10029 212-423-6262
• Elmhurst Hospital 79-01 Broadway Elmhurst, New York 11373 718-334-4000
• Queens Hospital Center 82-68 164th Street Jamaica, New York 11432 718-883-3000
Our law firm helped a family secure a $43,940,000 verdict for a child who was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. Another client of ours received a $23,500,000 verdict for a child who developed cerebral palsy and mental retardation after suffering a birth injury. Both verdicts were so large that they were reduced on appeal. We also recovered $1,846,000 and $1,400,000 for two newborns who lost motion in their arms during birth due to doctors applying incorrect force on the baby’s head
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