Five Causes of Cerebral Palsy and Labor and Childbirth

Cerebral palsy is the abnormal development of a child’s brain which mostly occurs before or shortly after birth. In some cases, it’s mainly caused by negligence by the medical practitioner. Walter Benenati, a personal injury lawyer from a prominent firm in Florida terms it as a case of negligence, which turns into pediatric medical malpractice. If a doctor detects hypoxia-ischema before or after birth, they should act on their duty to care otherwise this is termed as negligence.

Cerebral palsy is caused by the lack of oxygen supply in the brain which causes cellular damage. It is mainly caused by hypoxia-, and if detected the medical practitioner can reverse the damage by increasing oxygen supply to the brain. Let’s look at the five causes of cerebral palsy during birth and delivery:-

Preeclampsia

Preeclampsia occurs when a woman develops high blood pressure during pregnancy with traces of protein in the urine. Although the cause is unknown, it can cause complications for the mother and child. When a pregnant woman has high blood pressure, it means there is limited blood flow to the child which is a major cause of cerebral palsy. Preeclampsia puts the baby at risk of preterm delivery and with preterm babies they are susceptible to fetal distress and birth injuries.

Compression of the umbilical cord

The umbilical cord is the baby’s lifeline it provides nutrients, blood, and oxygen. As you contract during labor so does the umbilical cord it stretches and contracts. The compression causes a variable in the baby’s heartbeat which is monitored through the fetal heart rate monitor. If the compression prolongs the heart monitor will show signs of the baby’s heart slowing down, the medical practitioner should respond immediately. If this is not done the child may suffer from a brain injury.

Fetal distress

This happens when there is decreased oxygen and blood flow to the brain. Distress signals include meconium in the amniotic fluid, decreased fetal movement and changes in the fetal heart rate. In such cases, nurses can intervene immediately by giving the mother oxygen or repositioning her. If the case is severe, a c-section delivery is recommended to avoid birth injury and Hypoxia-ischemia.

Use of vacuum or forceps during delivery

During an emergency birth delivery, doctors may decide to use a vacuum extractor or forceps especially if there is fetal distress. In such instances, if the instruments are not used properly, they may cause birth injuries such as bleeding, head swelling or damage to baby facial nerves.

Delivery techniques

In the case of fetal distress, the doctor must be prepared for an emergency delivery. This includes the necessary resources such as oxygen for the mother and after delivery services for the child. Delaying treatment or delivery will deprive the baby of the much-needed oxygen for a long period, and baby can suffer from a brain injury. If this happens, the doctor is liable for damages caused due to negligence in relation to the duty of care.