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Rush, Hannula, Harkins & Kyler, L.L.P.

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where wrongs are made right

253.250.4516
866.454.RHHK

Office Location

4701 South 19th Street, Suite 300
Tacoma, Washington 98405

Tacoma Birth Injury Attorneys Take Action in Cerebral Palsy Cases

Helping parents respond to negligent harm to their babies

For expectant parents, a baby’s health is the highest priority. An injury to that child, especially one with lifelong consequences, requires in-depth investigation, and when called for, aggressive legal action to secure compensation. While a personal injury lawsuit cannot heal a child, it can provide financial resources to meet life’s challenges and deliver a sense of closure when a responsible party is held accountable. Since 1952, Rush, Hannula, Harkins & Kyler, L.L.P. has fought for injured parties whose cases cry out for justice.

What is cerebral palsy?

Cerebral palsy manifests in complete or partial muscle paralysis when a part of the brain called the cerebrum does not develop completely or sustains damage from disease or trauma. There are different varieties of cerebral palsy:

  • Spastic cerebral palsy diminishes strength and induces jerky movements because of muscle stiffness. Symptoms vary according to severity and area of the body affected:
    • Spastic hemiplegia affects one side of the body and may cause speech problems and seizures. It rarely impacts a person’s intelligence.
    • Spastic diplegia affects the lower limbs, stiffening the legs so walking is awkward and difficult.
    • Spastic quadriplegia affects the entire body, often retards intelligence and leads to seizures.
  • Ataxic cerebral palsy impacts balance and depth perception, and damages fine motor skills. It usually does not affect intelligence or communication skills.
  • Athetoid or dyskinetic cerebral palsy renders muscles weak or taut and subjects a patient to random, uncontrolled movement. Though speech is difficult, intelligence is usually unaffected.
  • Hypotonic cerebral palsy impacts muscle tone so breathing is labored and a baby’s head flops.

What causes of cerebral palsy give rise to a legal cause of action?

Cerebral palsy is always tragic, but is only compensable when someone’s negligence has caused it. Since cerebral palsy often occurs naturally, it’s important to establish that some event disrupted brain development or induced trauma. Such trauma can occur during delivery if:

  • A doctor did not treat the mother for pre-eclampsia.
  • A doctor allowed the second stage of labor to go on too long before ordering a C-section.
  • A doctor misused a vacuum extractor.
  • A doctor negligently allowed the baby to experience asphyxia.
  • A doctor misjudged a mother’s capacity to deliver vaginally and failed to order a C-section.
  • A doctor failed to diagnose an infant’s infection, such as meningitis.

Your legal team at Rush, Hannula, Harkins & Kyler, L.L.P. carefully investigates the circumstances surrounding your child’s cerebral palsy to determine if a healthcare provider’s failures amount to malpractice.

Contact our Tacoma birth injury lawyers for representation in cerebral palsy cases

If you suspect a healthcare provider’s negligence caused your child’s cerebral palsy, call the trial lawyers of Rush, Hannula, Harkins & Kyler, L.L.P. Our experienced malpractice lawyers are prepared to evaluate your case. Call 253.250.4516 or contact our firm online to schedule a free consultation.

Rush, Hannula, Harkins & Kyler, L.L.P.
4701 South 19th Street, Suite 300
Tacoma, Washington, 98405 USA
253.250.4516