Cerebral palsy is a more or less general term that includes a number of motor disorders which can develop in the womb, during pregnancy and up to about three years of age. Cerebral palsy primarily affects posture and movement, but has also been shown to affect communication behavior, and cognition in some individuals. Contrary to many popular misconceptions, cerebral palsy is a physical, and not a mental ailment.
Cerebral palsy is not thought to be genetic in nature, and those who suffer from the ailment will not see their fertility negatively affected. In fact, thousands of individuals with cerebral palsy across the country have been able to successfully bear and care for their children.
The Cost of a Cerebral Palsy Diagnosis
Cerebral palsy can be an extremely expensive ailment. A study of the costs associated with the disability, which was conducted in the early 2000s, found that when combining expenses and lost wages those suffering from cerebral palsy could see a negative financial burden of about $900,000 over their lifetimes. Undoubtedly this figure has risen significantly in the intervening years, with inflation and skyrocketing costs associated with health care.
Cerebral Palsy Benefits
If you suffer from cerebral palsy, you may be able to qualify for disability benefits. When applying for benefits with the Social Security Administration, your case will be evaluated for a variety of factors which will help to determine whether or not you qualify.
Some important factors which you should know when applying for cerebral palsy related disability include:
- When reviewing your file, a Social Security disability adjudicator will look for specific evidence supporting the fact that, due to your condition, you are unable to engage in typical daily activities.
- As it relates to work, the adjudicator will look for evidence that you are unable to perform the required functions of your job as a result of your ailment.
- Your adjudicator will review your medical records and treatment notes in order to draw up a complete profile of your medical history, and make a determination as to your eligibility for disability benefits.
- The Social Security Administration’s standard for approving benefits is not solely based on whether or not you are affected by a particular ailment, but also takes into account the functional limitations your ailment presents in your life.
A diagnosis of cerebral palsy may well lead to a medical malpractice lawsuit against the obstetrician or hospital if their negligence caused the cerebral palsy. However, regardless of whether or not you pursue a lawsuit, you may be entitled to disability benefits under the Social Security Administration. We encourage you to consult with an experienced cerebral palsy attorney and a disability attorney.