Cerebral palsy symptoms tend to vary according to the type of disability (spastic, athetoid, ataxic, or mixed), but typically appear prior to three years of age. The following are some of the more common cerebral palsy symptoms parents should look for if they suspect their child may have the condition:
- Developmental delays including difficulty learning to roll over, sit, crawl, smile, or walk
- Abnormal muscle tone, especially if muscles are flaccid and relaxed (hypotonia) or stiff and rigid (hypertonia)
- Unusual posture caused by favoring one side of the body
- Atypical reflexes, particularly the persistence of the Moro reflex after six months
- The appearance of hand preference before 12 months
Other cerebral palsy symptoms include: difficulty swallowing, speech impairment, trouble walking, bladder and bowel movement problems, breathing problems.
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Depending on the severity of the brain damage, cerebral palsy symptoms may also include ancillary conditions such as:
- Mental retardation, which affects one-third of children with cerebral palsy
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, a condition which appears to be more common in children with cerebral palsy
- Seizure disorders or epilepsy, which can be found in approximately one in three children with cerebral palsy
- Skeletal problems, particularly contractures and scoliosis, affect at least half of all children with cerebral palsy
- Visual impairment, primarily a condition called strabismus, occurs in nearly 75 percent of all children with cerebral palsy
- Hearing loss, full or partial and generally occurs as a consequence of early and severe jaundice
If your child is experiencing any of these cerebral palsy symptoms, you should consult with a physician as soon as possible.
Unfortunately, cerebral palsy is not always preventable. However, cerebral palsy that occurs as the result of medical malpractice or negligence is preventable. Parents whose child was born with cerebral palsy as a consequence of malpractice have legal rights.
If your child developed malpractice-related cerebral palsy, you may be eligible to seek lifetime financial assistance through a medical malpractice lawsuit. You do not have to suffer in vain. One of our experienced medical malpractice attorneys may be able to help you. Please contact one of our caring and qualified attorneys today for a FREE consultation.