Cerebral Palsy: Information for Pregnant Mothers

Cerebral PalsyThe most common among all childhood disabilities is cerebral palsy (CP). This disease affects up to three per 1,000 live births in the U.S. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), one out of 323 children in the U.S. is living with the condition. When a child has this disease, their motor function is either impaired or completely absent.

Brain damage

What you should understand is that, although this group of disorders affects motor function, it is actually caused by damage to the brain. This neurological disorder is more common than most people think or know. The direct cause is a non-progressive brain injury or malformation in a child’s brain during its development.

Movement and control

Movement and muscle coordination are thus affected. Maintaining balance and posture may be impossible in some patients.

Injury

The injury that leads to CP may happen before, during, or immediately after birth. However, it is still unknown as to what the specific cause is that leads to it. An expert from Tyrone Law Firm says if you believe that the birth injury occurs during childbirth and due to an error on the part of medical personnel, don’t hesitate to call a lawyer to handle the case.

Statistics

As a birth injury, cerebral palsy is more common among boys than girls. It is also more common among African American than among Caucasian and Hispanic children.

Spastic cerebral palsy is the most common type of CP, affecting 77% of CP patients. Their movements look awkward because of the stiffness in their muscles.

More than half of the patients in the U.S. are able to walk by themselves. Many of the patients suffer from a co-occurring condition such as epilepsy (41%) and autism spectrum disorder (about 7%).

Help for children with CP

Cerebralpalsy.org explains that, although there is no cure for the disorder, the condition can be managed. Those who are diagnosed with cerebral palsy may enjoy a long and healthy life. The family of the patient, along with medical professionals, can make this possible. If you are pregnant and are concerned about CP, ask your doctor about measures that can be made to prevent exposing your baby to the risks.