Treatment for Cerebral Palsy & Other Birth Injuries
Treatment for Spastic Cerebral Palsy
Spastic cerebral palsy has a variety of commonly practiced treatments designed to treat the symptoms it causes. However, there is no cure for the stiff and difficult body movements it instills in patients. Most of these treatments are designed to reduce stiffness, gain more flexibility, and promote independence in the patient. For individuals suffering from a spastic condition, the implementation of physical therapy and special braces can help stretch spastic muscles and improve motor development.
Muscle relaxant prescription drugs can help reduce spasticity, as can injections to alleviate muscle spasms. Additionally, there are some surgical options in existence that are designed to treat the spastic form of cerebral palsy. A team of healthcare experts from a wide range of fields can help you decide on the best treatment plan for your child. The setbacks and challenges of spastic cerebral palsy vary from patient to patient, and it is important to work with professionals to customize a plan of action.
The first step is contacting an experienced medical malpractice attorney in Baltimore, MD who can help you organize your strategy and guarantee that you obtain the help you are entitled to.
Treatment for Ataxic Cerebral Palsy
Ataxic cerebral palsy is the least common form of cerebral palsy, characterized by poor coordination and low muscle tone. These conditions result in physical unsteadiness and a shaky appearance, sometimes seen as a wide walking stance, tremor, or poor overall coordination. Treatment for ataxic cerebral palsy is guided by the symptoms displayed by the individual patient. Doctors typically work with the child and his or her family to devise a treatment plan that best fits their concerns and requirements.
This may include physical therapy, medications, or counseling. The goal of cerebral palsy treatment is to maximize independence and allow for a minimal amount of interference the disease may have on one’s life. If your child suffers from ataxic cerebral palsy, it is important not to let his or her condition go untreated. With proper medical attention, your daughter or son will be able to live a fuller and less challenging life. Assemble a team of professionals to help your family through this difficult time.
Treatment for Athetoid Cerebral Palsy
One of the most traumatic complications of the delivery process is shoulder dystocia. This condition occurs during childbirth when the shoulder of the baby cannot emerge from the birth canal properly or requires significant manipulation. If the shoulder of the baby is caught in the birth canal, aggressive pulling can cause several complications that can lead to cerebral palsy. It can sever, stretch, or pull off the nerves that control arm movements and sensation called brachial plexus palsy.
Shoulder dystocia can be prevented through attentive care during delivery. Ultrasounds can reveal if the delivery could be affected by shoulder dystocia, and experienced doctors can plan to prevent it. Should the doctor miss these signals, the clearest indication of shoulder dystocia is the so-called “turtle sign,” where in the baby’s head retracts into the mother shortly after it crowns. Unfortunately, many obstetricians fail to perform safe deliveries, and thousands of families suffer as a result.
Treatment for Mild Cerebral Palsy
Brachial plexus palsy is a condition that is caused by a birth injury to the brachial plexus. This is the network of nerves located near the shoulder that manages movement and sensation in the arm. Children who are afflicted with brachial plexus palsy may experience weak or paralyzed muscles in the shoulder, arm, and hand—often resulting in lifelong impairment. Brachial plexus palsy is usually diagnosed in the newborn nursery and treated by a multidisciplinary brachial plexus team.
This condition is often a result of forcible downward pressing of the shoulder during delivery, which stretches or injures the brachial plexus. Medical professionals estimate that two out of every 1,000 births result in some form of brachial plexus palsy. There are several forms of brachial plexus injuries which vary in severity and the area of the plexus that is damaged. Upper brachial plexus palsy, commonly referred to as Erb’s palsy, is a result of damage to the upper part of the nerve plexus.
Total brachial plexus palsy affects the entire brachial plexus; lower brachial plexus palsy is rare and is isolated to the lower plexus. Bilateral injuries affect the brachial plexus on both sides of the body and can have severe consequences. Brachial plexus palsy is a condition that often results in lifelong impairment. If your child has suffered from brachial plexus palsy, it is important to know your legal rights as a parent. You owe it to your family to be vigilant in this difficult and confusing time.
Treatment for Erb’s Palsy
About one or two babies out of every 1,000 suffer some form of injury to the brachial plexus at birth. Of these, about one in ten requires some form of treatment for Erb’s palsy. There are two treatment options for the condition, depending upon the severity of the injury. Most doctors recommend that children who suffer from Erb’s palsy perform daily exercises to maintain normal muscle and joint movements. This can increase the child’s range of motion and promote strength and flexibility.
In more severe cases, surgery may be suggested. If a child does not recover from their brachial plexus injury by the age of five months, surgery may help him or her improve arm function. Nerve surgery can be very effective when performed at an early age, although other procedures can be done to alter muscles and tendons for older children. Fortunately, there are effective treatment options available for children with Erb’s palsy. These operations can help your child live a full and complete life.
Treatment for Shoulder Dystocia
For a doctor to provide effective treatment for shoulder dystocia, attention must be given before, during, and after birth to ensure a safe delivery. Although it is extremely difficult to predict when shoulder dystocia may occur, there are circumstances that can put women at a higher risk for this complication. During birth, when obstetricians observe shoulder dystocia, special procedures must be implemented to save the life of the baby and ensure the safety of the mother.
Additionally, careful monitoring of the mother and her newborn is necessary after childbirth to treat shoulder dystocia. Shoulder dystocia treatment involves discussing all available options with a woman who may be at high risk for complications. Treatment involves proper birthing techniques and careful attention during the entire delivery to reduce the risk of shoulder dystocia and other injuries. Finally, proper care following childbirth is required to correct the harm done by shoulder dystocia.
Treatment for Brachial Plexus Palsy
Some children born with brachial plexus palsy are able to make a spontaneous recovery. However, others may be left with arm weakness that lingers for the remainder of their lives. Depending on the severity of the case, a team of multidisciplinary medical professionals may be necessary for a child to eventually live an unimpaired life. Physical and occupational therapy can help treat brachial plexus palsy by promoting mobility and strength in the arm.
For children who develop deformities in their arms, orthopedic attention may be required. In some cases, therapy may be paired with surgery to obtain satisfactory results. It is important to realize that all cases are unique, and a customized treatment plan must be created for each individual with brachial plexus palsy. Brachial plexus palsy does not have to result in lifelong disabilities. Early treatment can produce great improvements for many cases.
Treatment for Birth Asphyxia
When birth asphyxia occurs, prompt and effective treatment is absolutely necessary to prevent brain damage or death. Treatment is tailored to each situation using the following guidelines:
- The overall severity of the infant’s condition
- The baby’s health and tolerance for procedures
- Expected consequences of birth asphyxia
Some of the commonly utilized treatments for birth asphyxia include providing extra oxygen to the mother before delivery and performing a cesarean section for emergency delivery. Other treatment options include providing the baby with breathing assistance or using an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation machine that provides assistance for patients experiencing lung or heart failure.
Do you have questions about your rights and legal options? If so, we encourage you to contact the Baltimore medical malpractice attorneys at The Law Office of Snyder & Snyder, P.A. today.