Cerebral Palsy Injury Attorney Serving Stamford, Danbury, Bridgeport, Shelton and all of Connecticut
Determining life expectancy in cerebral palsy patients is difficult when it is first diagnosed, mainly because it may be hard to determine if a young infant in fact has cerebral palsy. In some children, the disorder is so mild that symptoms are barely noticeable or not attributed to cerebral palsy. They may be thought to be the result of some other disease.
As the child gets older, more of the symptoms become noticeable and the severity of the disease is easier to determine.
Cerebral Palsy Life Expectancy in Children Vs. Adults
Predicting life expectancy in children with cerebral palsy can be difficult. There are a number of reasons for this, including:
- The disorder may be hard to recognize early in the newborn’s life
- It can be difficult to find follow up data since pediatricians are usually the ones who collect the information and they don’t have actuarial skills or they lack a sufficiently large database. Plus, to get an accurate determination of life expectancy, a patient needs to be followed through adulthood until death, and these data are often lost to follow up.
- Data that are not available should be considered when determining outcomes
- Some researchers say the only way to accurately determine life expectancy when a child is an infant is to have pediatricians, statisticians, and epidemiologists combine their efforts
Research into about 1,600 children with cerebral palsy examined different categories of disability. These were:
- Cognition (memory, perception and thought)
- Mobility (the ability of the child to walk or use a wheelchair)
- Manual ability (such as being able to dress or feed themselves)
Among the most severely disabled children, survival past age two was under 25 percent.
In adults, survivability is often predicted by mobility. The more mobile the patient, the longer he or she will survive, according to results from a British study. Patients who could not move their wheelchairs on their own, were unable to feed or dress themselves, and who were severely mentally retarded died between 17 and 20 years of age.
While the disease is not progressive, the effects of the disease on the body can worsen over time. Some of these secondary effects include premature aging, high blood pressure, pain, incontinence, problems swallowing, osteoporosis, arthritis, depression, fatigue, progressive weakness and heart and lung problems.
If your baby was born or diagnosed with cerebral palsy, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact our experienced Connecticut birth injury lawyers today.