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Types of Cerebral Palsy Diagnoses & Their Effects

The Lancione Law Firm

Cerebral palsy is a lifelong condition instigated by brain damage that results in significant cognitive, movement, and motor skill problems. Caused by injury to a vulnerable and developing brain, cerebral palsy is typically a consequence of the birthing process when there is a lack of oxygen or blood flow to a baby’s brain. Tragically, it is one of the most common and dangerous childhood motor disabilities and a substantial number of these diagnoses are the results of preventable injuries, medical negligence, and malpractice. Unfortunately, it only takes a few mishandled moments without oxygen to the child’s brain to produce devastating results. While not all cases of cerebral palsy are directly linked to medical or hospital negligence, the majority can be traced back to mistakes made by the OB-GYN, labor and delivery staff, nurses, attending physicians, etc.

Cerebral palsy can be complex to understand as it does not refer to a specific illness, but rather a collection of distinct movement disorders resulting from brain injury during pregnancy, childbirth, or early infancy. It permanently causes great harm to a child’s muscles and can be categorized in 1 of 2 ways: hypertonic CP, characterized by high muscle tone, rigidity, and stiffness, or hypotonic CP, resulting in low muscle tone and loss of strength. There are 4 primary types of this condition, including:

  • Spastic cerebral palsy makes up to 80% of all cerebral palsy cases and is caused by damage to the pyramidal tracts, resulting in disability muscle stiffness in one area of the child’s body. This can manifest as diplegia, hemiplegia, or quadriplegia. Children suffering from extreme cases suffer from mental delays, seizures, sensory loss, and complete physical disability.
  • Dyskinetic cerebral palsy, or athetoid cerebral palsy, can affect leg, arm, and facial muscles to become either stiff or too loose. Victims also suffer from very slow or rapid involuntary muscle movements in the face, torso, and limbs. Common symptoms include posture issues, stiff or floppy limbs, and problems with feeding.
  • Ataxic cerebral palsy presents as a lack of balance and body coordination, adversely impacting motor skills. This type of CP is caused by damage to the cerebellum and results in reduced muscle tone, difficulty speaking, shakiness and tremors, depth perception issues, and more.
  • Mixed cerebral palsy involves a combination of 2 or more of the above types of CP and can range in severity. As the least common diagnosis, it is the consequence of brain damage in multiple areas.

Contact Our Compassionate & Skilled Cerebral Palsy Attorneys Today

At The Lancione Law Firm, we know nothing is as heartbreaking and traumatic for parents than to pick up the pieces after discovering your child’s disability. If your child is suffering from cerebral palsy at the hands of a negligent or reckless medical professional, our empathetic legal team will treat your case with the urgency and care it truly deserves. Allow us to fight for the advocacy and outcome your child deserves.

To schedule an initial case evaluation with a compassionate representative of our firm, contact us by calling (440) 220-4439.


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