Athetoid Cerebral Palsy
Athetoid cerebral palsy, also known as athetosis, dyskinetic cerebral palsy, and dyskinesia, is a form of cerebral palsy (CP) that causes involuntary or abnormal movements. Occurring in roughly 10% of cases of children with CP, athetoid cerebral palsy can cause uncontrollable fluctuations between high muscle tension, or “hypertonia,” and low muscle tension, known as “hypotonia.” As such, children with athetoid cerebral palsy have difficulty controlling movements in their limbs.
Like other types of cerebral palsy, athetoid cerebral palsy can sometimes be caused by the negligence of doctors and nurses during a baby’s delivery or prenatal care. If you believe your infant developed athetoid cerebral palsy due to a doctor’s carelessness, our Louisville cerebral palsy lawyers at Brett H. Oppenheimer, PLLC can fight for your child’s rights and pursue fair financial recovery on your family’s behalf.
What Are the Causes of Athetoid Cerebral Palsy?
Athetoid cerebral palsy is primarily associated with damage to the basal ganglia or cerebellum during brain development or brain injury. The basal ganglia are a group of nuclei located in the brain’s cerebral cortex that are responsible for coordinating voluntary movement, motor function, and the regulation of thinking and learning. Children with athetoid cerebral palsy can also experience other difficulties, such as drooling or difficulty swallowing. Risk factors include premature birth, infantile jaundice, and blood clots.
Damage to these regions of the brain can be caused by numerous factors, including:
- Infections in the mother or unborn fetus
- Trauma to the fetus’ developing brain
- Lack of oxygen supply to the brain
What Are the Signs of Athetoid Cerebral Palsy?
Parents typically begin observing signs of athetoid cerebral palsy when their children reach nine months of age or older. Jerky or involuntary movements in infants younger than this age may be indicative of slow development, but is generally not associated with a deeper medical issue.
If your child displays any of the following symptoms, seek medical attention immediately:
- Does not kick legs
- Slow, writing movements
- Difficulty holding posture
- Seems stiff or rigid
- Appears limp
- Cannot hold up head at three months old
- Does not reach for objects
- Does not smile by three months old
- Does not roll over
While debilitating, athetoid cerebral palsy can be treated to help children cope with their disability and grow up to live healthy, independent lives. Depending on the severity of your child’s condition, a combination of physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, medication, and possible surgery may be required as treatment.
Pursue Justice for Your Child – Call (502) 242-8877
While many cases of athetoid cerebral palsy are the result of unpreventable complications during pregnancy, some are the direct result of negligent medical acts such as delayed childbirth, improper use of medical equipment including forceps and vacuum extractors, or a failure to identify and treat infections in a pregnant woman or her unborn child.
If you believe your child’s cerebral palsy was the result of poor medical care, our Louisville medical malpractice attorneys at Brett H. Oppenhemer, PLLC can fight to ensure the responsible parties are held accountable and pursue every penny of your deserved compensation. Having recovered more than $100 million on behalf of injured clients throughout Kentucky, we have the knowledge and skills to maximize your chances of securing the results you need.
Get in touch with our office online today to begin discussing your case.
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