Hydrocephalus and Cerebral Palsy

Hydrocephalus, commonly referred to as ‘water on the brain’ (hence the name), involves the buildup of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) within the skull. This fluid, in turn, stretches the flexible skull of an infant while putting significant pressure upon the brain. While a shunt can be used to drain this fluid, the important issue surrounding hydrocephalus is the required action taken when it is discovered. Without proper drainage or action, hydrocephalus can lead to a brain injury resulting in Cerebral Palsy.

How Can Hydrocephalus Cause Cerebral Palsy?

Hydrocephalus poses a problem to a child’s health, potentially resulting in a Cerebral Palsy diagnosis, due to the pressure created by this cerebrospinal fluid. While stretching the flexible skull to make room, this fluid also, by volume, puts pressure on the brain itself. The ensuing damage caused by this pressure can result in a brain injury that, in turn, can lead to long-term harm, including Cerebral Palsy.

The buildup of fluid within a child’s skull can take place during the mother’s pregnancy and requires specific medical attention after delivery. This build up can take place for several reasons, including the inability of the body to absorb the cerebrospinal fluid at a rate equal to the amount produced, or due to the flow of this fluid being obstructed. If these problems occur within the womb, Cerebral Palsy may be inevitable and is considered to be “congenital.”

When a child’s hydrocephalus is ‘acquired,’ there is definitely more to be looked at in regard to the issue. Various diseases or direct trauma to the head can result in acquired hydrocephalus. Medical professionals are expected to help in avoiding both of these avenues; prevention must be part of post-birth care in order to ensure your child’s health is stabilized and that a lifetime of challenges is not unnecessarily faced.

If your child was diagnosed with hydrocephalus after birth and faces challenges due to Cerebral Palsy, it is important that you speak with a birth injury attorney. Acquired hydrocephalus is troubling in of itself, but if a medical professional failed to follow standard medical practices in the NICU or in post-birth care, your child may be eligible for Lifetime Benefits. These funds, set aside in a trust to pay for your child’s CP-related needs, are a critical avenue of assistance that can help you in getting the critical adaptive equipment, therapists, medical procedures and more that your child needs. Intended to help with overcoming challenges associated with a preventable condition, Lifetime Benefits are something every parent should look into due to the role they can have in your child’s success story.

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