Brain injury in the womb causes about 70 percent of cerebal palsy cases, while another 20 percent come from brain injury during birthing. Other possible causes include severe jaundice in the infant, infections during pregnancy, the trauma of birth and Rh incompatibility, as stated by WebMD
Infections during pregnancy can include rubella, cytomegalovirus and toxoplasmosis. Other infections that pregnant women develop but are often undetected have gained recognition as important causes of fetal brain damage. Severe jaundice is another possible cause for cerebral palsy. In normal infants, the liver filters out bilirubin, but when it does not, jaundice develops. Many babies begin life with jaundice because their livers do not start performing this function for a few days, but light therapy usually clears it up. If not, though, brain cell damage is a possibility, according to WebMD.
Rh incompatibility between infant and mother happens when the mother's body generates antibodies that attack the blood cells in the fetus. This can lead to a type of jaundice as well as brain damage. Sometimes, the process of labor and delivery ends up depriving the brain of oxygen or causes some other head trauma. Risk factors for this include breech births, low birth weight, premature birth, being part of a multiple birth or physical birth defects such as an anomalously small jawbone, groin hernias or faulty spinal bone development, notes WebMD.