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Every year, thousands of children here in the United States are diagnosed with cerebral palsy, a devastating condition that can cause a host of medical problems ranging from vision, hearing and speech problems to muscle spasms, muscle stiffness and mobility issues.
For those who are relatively unfamiliar with cerebral palsy, it may be somewhat shocking to learn that medical experts have not yet identified all of its causes. However, a brain injury sustained in utero, during delivery or shortly after birth is one well known and all too common factor.
For example, an OB/GYN may fail to properly monitor the health of the baby during the delivery or a pediatrician may fail to diagnose a certain health issue during the child’s early development.
While there are multiple national organizations dedicated to raising awareness about cerebral palsy and helping those in need, it’s also important to recognize that there are people working on their own to accomplish the very same feat.
Consider the case of 9-year-old Connor and his brother 7-year-old Cayden, who is unable to walk or talk due to cerebral palsy.
Eager to find a way to bond with his brother and raise awareness about his condition, Connor devised a plan for the two of them to compete in triathlons. Here, the two boys wouldn’t be going head-to-head, but rather competing together.
During their first triathlon this past summer, Connor towed his brother in a raft while swimming, pulled his brother in a trailer while biking and pushed his brother in a trailer while running.
This remarkable and courageous accomplishment caught the attention of the editors of Sports Illustrated for Kids who named the two brothers their 2012 SportsKids of the Year, putting them on the cover of the magazine and presenting them with an award at a lavish ceremony.
“If people would race with people who can’t walk or talk … it might open the eyes of [those] who don’t really care about it,” said Connor during a recent interview.
Connor and Cayden’s inspirational story should provide comfort to any parents who have received the devastating news that their child suffers from this condition. If you believe that a physician’s negligence may be the cause of your child’s cerebral palsy, consider contacting an experienced legal professional to learn more about your rights and options for recovery.
Source: International Business Times, “Brothers, one with cerebral palsy, receive the Sports Illustrated Kids 2012 SportsKids of the Year award,” Esther Tanquintic-Misa, Jan. 22, 2013