Cerebral Palsy

Describes a group of disorders of the development of movement and posture, causing activity limitation, that are attributed to non progressive disturbances that occurred in the developing foetal or infant brain. It is often accompanied by disturbances of sensation, cognition, communication, perception &/or behaviour &/or seizures

Bax et al (2004)

Children with cerebral palsy may not be able to move, talk, eat or play in the same ways as other children.

The main classifications of Cerebral Palsy are:

Spasticity:

  • 60 – 80% of all cases
  • Hypertonia (increased muscle tone)
  • Spastic Hemiplegia
  • Spastic Diplegia – most common
  • Spastic Quadriplegia

 
Athetoid or Dyskinetic:

  • 30% of all cases
  • Mixed muscle tone (often hypotonic (i.e. low muscle tone) for first year & then increasing tone with age)
  • Involuntary movements

Ataxia:

  • 10% of all cases
  • Usually have hypotonia and tremors
  • Difficulties with balance and fine movements

What parents may report

With an infant or baby, parents may not notice anything is wrong. However, later parents may report some of the following:

  • stiff or floppy arms, legs, and trunk especially noticed when dressing and undressing
  • poor ability to move i.e. with rolling or sitting up
  • not achieving their milestones i.e. rolling, sitting, crawling, standing and walking
  • poor feeding ability e.g. with chewing and swallowing
  • poor vocalisation
  • difficulty maintaining body temperature, especially of the hands and feet
  • sleeping difficulties
  • constipation
  • learning difficulties

With an older child, difficulties may continue as outlined above but other difficulties may become more apparent such as:

  • stiffness or poor range of movement in the joints
  • poor ability to move in and out of positions
  • difficulty with self-care e.g. dressing, washing,
  • on-going delay reaching milestones such as walking up stairs, hopping, jumping etc.
Dyspraxia Foundation
Apraxia-KIDS (a program of The Childhood Apraxia of Speech Association)
Dyspraxic Teens Forum

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  Telephone: 01895 835144
  office@leemedical.co.uk

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