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Understanding Erb's Palsy and Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy and Erb's palsy are two conditions that can result from improper medical attention during pregnancy or birth.

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Parents in central Florida deserve to await the birth of their newborns with all the joy that the Florida sunshine can deliver. Sadly this is not always possible. When complications arise during pregnancy, the opportunity for serious, lifelong disabilities to occur enters the stage. When this is caused by the negligence of a healthcare professional, the tragedy that must be faced is great.

What is Erb's palsy?

Erb's palsy, also known as brachial plexus palsy is a condition observable by paralysis or weakness through the shoulder and potentially arm region. The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons indicates that the brachial plexus is a nerve bundle that controls these areas. When babies must be manipulated in any way during labor, these nerves can be damaged, causing the resulting Erb's palsy. The AAOS estimates that one or two infants in every 1,000 is affected by this condition.

What is cerebral palsy?

Cerebral palsy is a non-curable condition that causes weakness, paralysis or poor muscle control in different areas of the body per the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. About 20 percent of cerebral palsy cases are estimated to be attributed to a birth injury according to WebMD.com. One of the leading risk factors of cerebral palsy is the cessation or limitation of oxygen flow to infants when in the womb.

Muscles can be stiff or floppy and some people experience spastic-type reflexes and other involuntary movements. Often not noticeable at birth, cerebral palsy typically becomes evident by the age of three or so. The level of disability caused by cerebral palsy varies from person to person.

What is pre-eclampsia?

WebMD.com states that pre-eclampsia is a complication that can arise during pregnancy and that can pose serious risk to babies. Mothers may experience high levels of protein in their urine as well as elevated blood pressures. More visible symptoms include puffiness and swelling through the lower and upper extremities.

If pre-eclampsia is not properly treated, up to 15 percent of babies can die according to the American Pregnancy Association. Additionally, pre-eclampsia can develop into full eclampsia. When this happens, the amount of oxygen delivered to babies is severely reduced, introducing the chance for serious brain injuries.

Important tips for parents in Florida

At any point during pregnancy, labor and delivery or even after birth that a problem is suspected, prompt help is a must. This can include medical help and also legal help. Working with an attorney when a birth injury is suspected is a primary way of seeking the right levels of compensation.

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