Cerebral Palsy and Erb’s Palsy

Birth Injury and Medical Malpractice Lawyer

Cerebral palsy and Erb’s palsy are types of birth injuries that sometimes result from the negligence of doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals during the childbirth process. Both of these disorders can affect a child’s body movement and proper development, but there are distinct differences between the two.

Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy is a neurological disorder. It affects body movement and muscle development, often resulting in involuntary spastic movements. Cerebral palsy can also affect neurological development, causing learning disorders or mental retardation.

Cerebral palsy is most commonly caused when a baby does not receive adequate oxygen during delivery. However, it can also be caused by a physician’s failure to:

  • Detect and treat maternal infection
  • Respond to fetal distress
  • Treat jaundice in a newborn
  • Use proper medical instruments for delivery

Erb’s Palsy

Erb’s palsy is a direct result of nerve damage to the brachial plexus during delivery. Often, this nerve damage is caused by shoulder dystocia, which can be anticipated and avoided by an attentive doctor long before you reach the delivery stage.

Doctors should pay attention to several signs during your pregnancy to avoid Erb’s palsy, including:

  • Maternal obesity
  • Large pre-birth weight
  • Abnormal presentation of the fetus
  • Short maternal stature
  • Overdue pregnancy

If these signs are detected prior to labor, a doctor should immediately respond to fetal distress by considering an emergency C-section or another alternate delivery method. Nerve injuries can also occur by improper pulling on the baby during delivery.

The consequences of Erb’s palsy include delayed development and paralysis in the arms or fingers. These symptoms may be temporary, but are often permanent.

What You Can Do

If you child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy or Erb’s palsy because of a preventable birth injury, you have a right to hold the responsible parties accountable through a medical malpractice lawsuit. Our dedicated Norfolk birth injury attorneys John Cooper and Jim Hurley are fully committed to helping families who have suffered the impact of birth injuries receive the full amount of compensation they are due.

If your child was born with a birth injury that you believe could have been avoided, please contact our medical malpractice lawyers today to schedule a free case evaluation.

Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers has offices in Norfolk and Virginia Beach, representing injured victims throughout Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Newport News, and the Hampton Roads area. (Please be sure to schedule an appointment before visiting our Virginia Beach location.)