Answers to Your Questions on Injury and Disability Cases in DC, MD and VA
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At Donahoe Kearney, we know you're in an unfamiliar and unfair system after a serious injury or illness. We've seen too many people get taken advantage of byt the insurance company after a serious injury or illness. So we've published books, guides and reports and answered hundreds of questions that have helped thousands of people just like you.
Here are some of the questions people have when they first contact us about D.C., Maryland and Virginia medical malpractice, serious car accidents, long term disability insurance claims, or workers compensation. We try to provide as much information as we can based on our experience helping people stand up to insurance companies after a serious accident or injury in D.C., Maryland and Virginia.
Since every person is unique, you probably have questions or need specific information about the legal process when there is an injury or death in your family. We make it easy for you, so contact us to talk it through. We'll schedule a free no obligation, secure and confidential zoom call (or regular phone call) and give you all the information we can.
Call us today at 202-393-3320.
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How Can I Tell if My Child Has Cerebral Palsy in DC?
What Is Cerebral Palsy?
Cerebral palsy is a movement disorder caused by an injury or abnormality of the brain, usually around the time of birth. As lawyers representing children in medical malpractice cases in DC, Maryland and Virginia, and with cerebral palsy caused by birth injuries, like delay in performing a c-section, we are often asked about signs and symptoms of cerebral palsy. One of the most concerning signs would be if a child is not meeting his or her developmental milestones; not rolling over, sitting up, crawling, standing, walking, or talking when they normally should. Sometimes children with cerebral palsy don't have muscle coordination (this is also called ataxia) or stiff muscles with movement (spasticity).
Other signs and symptoms can include problems with sucking or eating, excessive drooling, difficult swallowing, and problems with fine motor skills (like picking up small objects).
Sometimes Cerebral Palsy is the Result of Medical Malpractice In Washington DC
If your child was born prematurely because of infection, or their was a difficult labor, or the hospital was late in delivering the baby, you should be aware that your child's cerebral palsy could be caused by medical malpractice. Holding the hospital or doctors accountable could give your child the resources you need to take care of him or her for the rest of their lives.
You Need An Experienced Cerebral Palsy Lawyer To Review Your Medical Records For Signs of Malpractice
If you have more questions or need more information about a medical malpractice case in DC, Maryland or Virginia give us a call at 202-393-3320 to speak with a real person today. We will send you our free, no obligation guides Picking Up the Pieces After Medical Malpractice to help you make the best decision for you and your family.
How Hard Is It To Have My Child's Medical Malpractice Case Evaluated In DC, Maryland, And Virginia?
We Make It Easy To Get Your Case Evaluated If Your Child Was Affected By Medical Malpractice
First, we make it easy for you. We review all of the medical information, meet you and your child, and sit down with you to talk it all over. We've developed a process for helping families with kids hurt by malpractice that doesn't take up a lot of your time and injury - so you can focus on your family and your child (but we keep you up to date on everything).
So from a parent's view, we handle it all. But we've helped a lot of families just like yours over the last 25 years, and there are some things you may be feeling that are pretty common when you're dealing with malpractice and the effects it has on your child and your family.We Understand There Are Significant Emotions Involved In Having Your Child's Case Evaluated
I've heard parents say about their injured children "I just want my child to be okay. It's not about money or time or any of those things. I just want to make sure my baby is okay."
There is sometimes an emotional barrier to investigating whether malpractice was the cause of your child's devastating injuries, or thinking about starting a lawsuit, mostly because you are so overwhelmed by your child's injuries that you are unable to focus on what might happen down the road. There is also a fear of the unknown, which creates an emotional barrier.
Sometimes it's a friend or family member that is instrumental in bringing a mother or father around to the idea of investigating whether you should pursue a malpractice case to benefit your child and your family - taking some of the financial burdens away, getting him or her resources for special needs, making sure there is money available for his or her future. Sometimes it's hard to get past the immediate crisis and look to the future and what the child might need as he or she grows to be an adult, or when you can no longer take care of him or her.
Many People Don't Have Their Case Investigated Because They Are Afraid They Can't Afford It
Malpractice lawsuits are actually handled on a contingency basis, and it's true that lawsuits can be expensive, especially with multiple expert witnesses and consultants in most cases. We don't put that risk on you - if Donahoe Kearney doesn't win or settle the case, you don't have to pay. Plus we don't want you worrying about the case - we want you focused on your child and your family, as only a parent can.
We don't normally charge an hourly rate for medical malpractice cases. In fact, we don't charge a fee in any serious injury case unless we win or settle your case. Which means that we don't get paid unless you get paid. There is no risk to you, no upfront payment, no retainer. That's simply how it works. It's called a contingency fee.
How are we able to do this? Not to be paid until the end of your case, and only if we win? Read more here.
Our Experienced Medical Malpractice Attorneys Do Things Differently. We Investigate The Case First
We have a very focused, personalized system we've developed over 25 years of holding hospitals and doctors accountable for injuring patients - especially children - so we will tell you upfront if we don't think you have a case that should be filed in the courts. And we only work with people and families we can really help - when the injuries are so severe that the child will need lifetime care and treatment, modifications to your home (or a new house), nurses and healthcare workers to come in and help at night or when you are gone. So we naturally limit the number of people we work with.
Call Our Experienced Medical Malpractice Lawyers Today
If this sounds like your situation, please reach out to us. It's easy to get started. You can call (202) 393 - 3320 to talk to a real person who will listen, or fill out the form to the left and we can call you. There's no obligation or cost and it's completely confidential.
But don't wait - we want to get started helping you and your child!
How Often Is Cerebral Palsy Preventable?
Could My Child's Cerebral Palsy Have Been Prevented In DC, Maryland Or Virginia?
This is an excellent question considering how devastating cerebral palsy is to a child, and sometimes it is due to complications during labor and delivery, or as a complication of premature birth. Usually, cerebral palsy occurs around the time of birth. Sometimes cerebral palsy can be caused by complications from jaundice, infection and other medical issues the newborn baby has.
According to the Cerebral Palsy Group, Cerebral Palsy affects approximately 500,000 children and adults, with around 8,000 babies and between 1,200 and 1,500 preschool-age children diagnosed each year.Those Diagnosed With Cerebral Palsy Are Affected Differently
Cerebral Palsy is essentially brain damage to a certain part of the brain that can occur as the child develops in the womb, during childbirth due to asphyxia, and in a few other ways. The damage is to the motor cortex of the brain and results in difficulty with gross and fine motor skills development, balance, speech, muscle tone, and other types of development. Cases of Cerebral Palsy range from mild to severe; some children with Cerebral Palsy grow up to be completely self-sufficient while some need 24/7 care now, and will need it for their whole lives - long after their parents are gone.
In our experience, Cerebral Palsy can be preventable, and because of that, can lead to a medical malpractice lawsuit against the hospital that caused the injuries, to make up for some of the financial harms and losses the baby will suffer. Medical malpractice in D.C. happens because the hospital or doctors did not comply with the standard medical care the mom or baby needed, and failed to follow established Patient Safety Rules.
We Have Significant Experience And Expertise That Will Help You And Have Helped Past Clients
In this case that we won, we sued a doctor for failing to follow up on a routine test, which resulted in prematurity and Cerebral Palsy with mental retardation that could have been prevented if he had simply gotten the test results and treated the infection with antibiotics - without the test result, they never ordered antibiotics, and the infection spread, causing the mom to deliver prematurely.
There was no system for making sure important medical test results were followed up on.
We won a significant award for a family who would likely spend millions on their son's lifetime costs of round-the-clock care because of his cerebral palsy. That case made a significant impact on the family - the right house that was accessible for their son and comfortable for their family, the best care for their son, extra nursing care when he needs it, easy transportation, and a lot more.
Contact Our Experienced Cerebral Palsy Lawyers Today!
For more information about Cerebral Palsy visit our Cerebral Palsy library and if you're ready to talk about how to start the process of investigating a medical malpractice case for your child, Give us a call at 202-393-3320. You'll speak with a real person who wants to hear your story today.
When Does Cerebral Palsy Start To Show?
What Are the Signs Of Cerebral Palsy?
Cerebral Palsy is a condition resulting from lack of oxygen to the brain during birth, called asphyxia. Although you may have awareness of having a traumatic birth, you may not even know that your child has Cerebral Palsy until he or she is one or two or three years, and even five years old. Sometimes even later.
If there was a traumatic birth the doctors should (but most of the time don't) make you aware of the risk of Cerebral Palsy. The reason for this is because many times, traumatic birth is a result of malpractice - many times you and the baby showed signs of distress, both maternal (mom) and fetal (baby) and the doctors at the hospital didn't take action to deliver the baby until it was too late and the damage was done. And a lot of times, we see interns and residents taking care of labor and delivery patients in DC hospitals - sometimes they don't know when to call the attending physician or a specialist to evaluate you and the baby.
Diagnosis of Cerebral Palsy usually comes after you and your child's doctor (pediatrician) begin to notice that your child is not reaching his or her developmental benchmarks or milestones. In some cases, it is diagnosed in the NICU when the baby is very young. Some of the noticeable benchmarks include rolling over, sitting,crawling, and walking. Other impairments include loss of muscle tone, gross and fine motor functions, balance, control, coordination, reflexes, and posture.
If You Don't Know About Cerebral Palsy Sooner, You Won't Know How Much Time You Have To Seek Help
Today I read on a Facebook post that a family didn't know their child had Cerebral Palsy until he was 10 years old. We've had a case where the mom knew her son had cerebral palsy but the hospital never told her the cause, even though he got all of his medical care there.
The time limits vary in DC, Maryland, and Virginia for bringing a case for a child who was injured or has cerebral palsy, but the time limits are longer for children than adults, so don't think that you have run out of time - call us and we can tell you how much time you have left on the statute of limitations.
Call Our Experienced Cerebral Palsy Lawyers Today
At Donahoe Kearney we specialize in Cerebral Palsy cases, so we know exactly what to look for in medical records, exactly which developmental delays to watch for, and how to manage opposing doctors, lawyers, and others who are protecting the interests of the hospital and its insurance company. Give us a call today for a free investigation and to learn more about our process. You can reach us at (202)-393-3320.
My Child Has Cerebral Palsy. How Much Will It Cost To Raise Her In DC?
My Child Was Diagnosed With Cerebral Palsy. What Will Be The Lifetime Cost Of Care?
Parents of a child with Cerebral Palsy worry about the future of their special needs child: their health, well-being, and unfortunately, their finances. They worry because most likely, the child with Cerebral Palsy (even severe) will long outlive his parents and will never be able to care for or support him/herself.
And as a parent, you want (and your child deserves) the best medical care and treatment for his condition, not just the minimum, especially if the child's disability was caused by medical malpractice. That is why the law allows damages for all of the future care and treatment your child needs: nursing care, medications, doctors visits, modifications to your home to make it handicap accessible, a wheel chair accessible van, and a lot more. Let's face it, these services and products cost a lot of money.Over Time, Costs Add Up And Can Cause A Risk Of Financial Issues
According to a study released by the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) entitled: "Economic Costs Associated with Mental Retardation, Cerebral Palsy, Hearing Loss and Vision Impairment - United States, 2003" the costs in the U.S, of caring for people with cerebral palsy can reach into the billions over a lifetime. The study shows that “lifetime costs in 2003 dollars are expected to total $51.2 billion for persons born in 2000 with mental retardation, $11.5 billion for persons with Cerebral Palsy, $1.9 billion for persons with hearing loss, and $2.6 billion for persons with vision impairment.”
Needless to say; that is a profound amount of money needed to care for people with cerebral palsy and other disabilities. And providing for a child with cerebral palsy can be an incredible individual burden on you as parents and on your family - running well into the millions of dollars. It's even worse when we consider that many times cerebral palsy could have been prevented at the hospital and some parents and families may not even know their child's cerebral palsy was caused by medical malpractice due to hospital errors or doctors' mistakes.
Contact Our Experienced Cerebral Palsy Lawyers Today
If you or somebody that you love has been affected by a hospital error that caused cerebral palsy, please give us a call today to speak to a live person. At no cost or obligation we can send you a book about getting resources for special needs children and discuss whether or not your case was preventable. As experienced medical malpractice lawyers, we can get you started on the right road to getting the resources your child needs. Call us at 202-393-3320; a real person will answer the phone today.
A Doctor In A D.C. Hospital Said My Baby Had Hypoxia At Birth. What Is Hypoxia?
Hypoxia Can Cause Serious Damage And Can Cause Cerebral Palsy
Hypoxia is a lack of oxygen to the tissues in the body. Sometimes it is used to describe a lack of oxygen to the brain as well, meaning the baby is not getting sufficient oxygen to his brain before or during birth. It is a devastating, sometimes fatal condition that can cause severe brain damage.
Lack of oxygen to the brain at birth is sometimes called asphyxia as well. The term to describe the severe, permanent injury to the baby's brain is hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy; usually called HIE. This is certainly a cause of cerebral palsy, and can often be medical malpractice if the residents, interns and medical students in the hospital did not recognize and act on the signs and symptoms in time to prevent the injury to the baby. These signs and symptpms can include fetal tachycardia (elevated heart rate), non-reassuring fetal monitoring strips, maternal bleeding, and decreased heart rate in the baby.
If a doctor told you your baby was hypoxic at birth (that he or she was deprived of oxygen during or around the time of birth and it caused an injury to his brain), you should have the medical records evaluated by an experienced D.C. medical malpractice lawyer to determine whether the injury was caused by medical malpractice and should have been prevented.
How Do I Know If My Child Has Been Affected By A Medical Mistake?
The only way to really know if your child's condition, like cerebral palsy, was caused by medical malpractice is to take that first step and have the medical records reviewed. You may be one step closer to getting your child the resources he or she needs to live a full and healthy life and to provide everything required by the medical condition. We've helped many families with a child affected by medical malpractice in every D.C. hospital. And medical malpractice happens in every D.C. hospital; "good" hospitals can still cause serious injuries.
If You Suspect Your Child's Condition Was Caused By A Medical Mistake, Contact Our Experienced Workers Comp Lawyers Today
Medical malpractice cases take time to review and analyze; so call us today so we can get started working to get you and your family the resources you need. You can contact us today at 202-393-3320 for a free consultation with one of our experience staff members.