What Is Spastic Hemiplegia Cerebral Palsy

Friday, July 5, 2024

What Is Spastic Hemiplegia Cerebral Palsy

Written by Malman Law, reviewed by Steve J. Malman.

Spatic Hemiplegia is a common type of cerebral palsy that causes muscle tightness and involuntary contractions in the limbs and extremities on one side of the body. The illness causes symptoms in a single side of the body, including pain and lack of muscle control.

Hemiplegia—the inability to control muscles or body parts—may affect the face, arm, and leg on one side of the body. Sometimes, paralysis may not be present or not as severe in all affected body parts.

A Spatic Hemiplegia may be a result of a birth injury your child experienced before, during, and shortly after birth.

A trusted birth injury attorney can investigate your child’s case and determine if a healthcare provider is responsible for the illness.

Prevalence of Spastic Hemiplegia in Children

The Cerebral Palsy Alliance Research Foundation estimates that 1 in 323 children in the United States is diagnosed with cerebral palsy.

In every hour, a child is born with cerebral palsy in the United States, with 40% born prematurely and 60% at term. In addition, around a million people have Cerebral palsy in the United States.

There are other types of cerebral palsy with the following effects:

  • Spastic Diplegia that affects both legs
  • Spastic quadriplegia affects both legs and arms, often resulting in the need for a wheelchair.

Spatic Hemiplegia is more common than Spastic Diplegia and less prevalent than Spastic quadriplegia.

Signs and Symptoms of Spastic Hemiplegia

The most salient symptoms of Spastic Hemiplegia are movements that seem stiff and jerky. Body muscles may also feel stiff to the touch.

However, there are additional symptoms of Spatic Hemiplegia, which include:

  • Difficulty walking
  • Poor development of fine motor skills
  • A dominant preference for one hand during infancy
  • Inability to reach developmental milestones
  • Using one hand during play
  • Muscle weakness and stiffness on one side of the body
  • Holding one hand in the first but not the other

Your child’s arm can be affected more than the leg.

What Causes Spastic Hemiplegic Cerebral Palsy?

Spatic Hemiplegic Cerebral Palsy occurs when the spinal cord and neuron bundles in the brain sustain damage. The damage interrupts signals from the brain to body muscles, making muscle movement difficult.

The damage to the brain’s motor cortex is caused by:

  • Direct trauma to the brain
  • Exposure to toxins during pregnancy
  • Birth injuries, e.g., misuse of forceps or tools or a delayed C-section
  • An incompatible blood type with the mother
  • Seizures
  • Pregnant mother exposure to toxins
  • An infection with the birthing parent
  • Untreated jaundice— yellowing of skin and eyes

Sometimes, premature births cause the baby to receive less oxygen than it needs, which can lead to Spastic Hemiplegic.

Conditions That Cause Spastic Hemiplegic

  • Spinal cord Injuries
  • Concussion and traumatic brain injuries
  • Seizure and epilepsy
  • Facial conditions, including Bell’s palsy
  • Congenital conditions such as alternating hemiplegia of childhood
  • Brain tumors, including cancer
  • Infections in the nervous system, including meningitis, encephalitis, or Ramsay Hunt Syndrome
  • Migraine headaches
  • Hemorrhage or Aneurysms inside of your brain

Risk Factors of Spastic Hemiplegia

A number of factors associated with an increased risk of cerebral palsy include:

  • Maternal Health: Particular infections and toxic exposure can significantly increase the risk of cerebral palsy in infants. The inflammation related to the infection can damage the developing brain of the unborn baby. For instance, if a mother develops herpes during pregnancy, the infection might be passed to the child, affecting the womb and placenta.
  • Infant Illness: Illness at the infancy stage greatly increases the risk of cerebral palsy. For instance, bacterial meningitis is an infection that causes swelling in the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord. Viral encephalitis is a viral infection that causes inflammation in the membrane surrounding the brain and spinal cord.
  • Low Birth Weight: Babies born weighing 2.5kgs or less are at a higher risk of developing cerebral palsy. The risk of Spastic Hemiplegia increases as the weight drops.
  • Premature Birth: Babies born prematurely face a higher risk of cerebral palsy. The earlier the baby is born, the higher the risk of cerebral palsy.
  • Multiple Babies: The risk of cerebral palsy increases with the number of babies sharing the uterus. Multiple babies in the uterus are associated with the risk of premature birth and low birth weight.

Complications of Spastic Hemiplegia

Spastic Hemiplegia contributes to muscle weakness, muscle spasticitIllnesses at the infancy stage greatly which often results in complications in childhood, and adulthood.

Here are the possible complications of Spastic Hemiplegia:

  • Malnutrition: If an infant has trouble feeding and swallowing, it makes it difficult to obtain enough nutrition. Insufficient nutrients can impair growth and weaken bones.
  • Mental Health Conditions: People who suffer from cerebral palsy struggle with mental health conditions like depression. Cerebral Palsy often leads to social isolation and other challenges of living with a disability that contribute to depression.
  • Lung and Heart Diseases: People with Spastic Hemiplegia are at risk of developing heart, lung, and breathing conditions. Challenges with swallowing can trigger respiratory issues such as aspiration pneumonia. Aspiration pneumonia occurs when a child inhales food, liquids, saliva, or vomit into the lungs.
  • Contracture: Contractor is a condition of muscle tissue shortening because of muscle tightening. Contracture can cause bones to bend, slow bone growth, joint changes, dislocation, and partial dislocation. As a result, cerebral palsy victims may suffer dislocated hips, bone changes, and curved spines.
  • Osteoarthritis: Misalignment or pressure on joints may lead to a painful bone disease.
  • Osteoporosis: Cerebral Palsy patients often suffer low bone density that occurs because of poor nutrition, lack of mobility, and anti-seizure medicines.

Spastic Hemiplegia can also trigger other complications, including sleep conditions, intestinal issues, and problems with oral health.

Get Legal Assistance From an Experienced Birth Injury Attorney

When a child develops cerebral palsy, they’re likely to endure a reduced quality of life because of abnormal growth patterns. You may be entitled to compensation if your child developed cerebral palsy due to a birth injury.

At Malman Law, our Chicago personal injury lawyers have decades of experience representing injured victims. Contact us online or at (312) 629-0099 for a free case review.

Steve Malman

Malman Law’s founder Attorney Steven Malman has over 30 years of experience handling personal injury, nursing home, medical malpractice, truck accidents, car accidents, premises liability, construction, and workers’ compensation cases in Chicago, IL.

Years of experience: +30 years
Justia Profile: Steve Malman
Illinois Registration Status: Active and authorized to practice law—Last Registered Year: 2024

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This page has been written, edited, and reviewed by a team of legal writers following our comprehensive editorial guidelines. This page was approved by President and Founder, Steven J. Malman who has more than 20 years of legal experience as a personal injury attorney.

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