What Are Developmental Disabilities?

Michigan Birth Injury Attorneys Explain Developmental Disabilities

Developmental disabilities are birth defects related to a problem with a body part or body system function. Our Detroit, Michigan birth injury lawyers will discuss developmental disabilities and the instances of medical malpractice that cause them. Should you have questions or case inquiries, please contact our birth injury lawyers by phone at 888-419-2229, via Live Chat on your screen’s left side, or via contact form. We will provide you with a free legal consultation and inform you of your legal options.

Types of Developmental Disabilities

1. Nervous System Disabilities

What are Developmental Disabilities?Nervous system disabilities are birth defects that affect how the brain, spinal cord and nervous system function.  These defects can impact a child’s intelligence and ability to learn.  Nervous system defects can also cause problems such as behavioral disorders, movement disorders, convulsions, and speech or language problems.

Intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDDs) refer to a particular range of scores on an IQ (intelligence quotient) test.  IDDs can be caused by a number of conditions.

Common causes of intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDDS):

  • Down syndrome.  This is a set of mental and physical characteristics related to having an extra copy of chromosome 21.
  • Fragile X syndrome.  This is the most common inherited form of IDDs and it is caused by a defect in a certain part of the Fragile X Mental Retardation-1 gene.  This defect causes the body to produce little or none of a particular protein.  A lack of this protein causes the brain to fail to develop normally.
  • Autism spectrum disorders.  These disorders encompass a range of problems that can affect a child’s communication skills, intelligence and social skills.  Since autism is diagnosed on a spectrum, children with this condition can have very mild or severe symptoms.

2. Sensory-Related Disabilities

Sensory-related disabilities are often a significant part of birth defect patterns.  For example:

  • Children with congenital rubella are typically deaf and likely to develop cataracts of the eyes.
  • Children with Williams syndrome have problems seeing spatial relationships among objects.
  • Children who have Fragile X syndrome are usually very sensitive to loud noises; these kids may overreact or have outbursts in reaction to loud sounds.

3. Metabolic Disorders

This category of functional birth defects affects a child’s metabolism, which is the way the body builds up, breaks down and processes materials used for energy.  Metabolism is a necessary component of functioning.  For example, the breakdown of sugar for energy is a metabolic process.

Two common metabolic disorders are:

  • Phenylketonuria (PKU).  When a child has PKU, there is a problem with an enzyme that is used to speed up certain chemical reactions.  This causes IDDs.
  • Hypothyroidism.  This is a hormonal condition that can be treated.  If left untreated, it can cause IDDs.

4. Degenerative Disorders

Some babies born with degenerative disorders seem normal at birth, but later these infants lose their abilities or functions due to the condition.  In these cases, the defect is usually not detected until an older age, when the child starts to show signs of a loss of functional ability.  In some cases, degenerative disorders are caused by metabolic disorders.

Mental, physical, and sensory problems can all be caused by degenerative disorders, depending on the type of defect.  Rett syndrome usually affects females and it is most often caused by a specific genetic abnormality that causes a problem with the development of the gray matter of the brain.

Legal Help for Birth Injuries and Developmental Disabilities

Legal Help for Birth Injuries and Developmental DisabilitiesReiter & Walsh ABC Law Centers is one of the only law firms in the country that exclusively handles birth injury cases. Our birth injury attorneys have the experience and depth of knowledge necessary to win highly complicated cases related to cerebral palsy, intellectual and developmental disabilities, HIE, and medical malpractice.

If your loved one was diagnosed with developmental disabilities that you believe were the result of medical malpractice, contact our legal team today. You may be entitled to compensation from a medical malpractice claim. Our birth injury lawyers have helped hundreds of families receive compensation for important rehabilitation and care expenses.

To begin your free case review, contact Reiter & Walsh ABC Law Centers today. Our Michigan birth injury attorneys will answer your questions and inform you of your legal options. You may call our offices toll-free at 888-419-2229, complete this online contact form, or press the Live Chat tab to the left.