Cerebral Palsy

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Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral Palsy is a generic term that is applied to a non-progressive motor disorder. Approximately (2).% of children born today will have some form of cerebral palsy (CP). There are four main categories in which CP disorders are placed. First, Spastic syndromes due to upper motor neuron involvement are representative of 70% of CP cases (8). Subgroups of this include hemiplegia (21%), quadriplegia (27%), and diplegia (21%), which is a mixture of quadriplegia and paraplegia (8). The hemiplegics of this group often have mild or less severe speech impediments than the other subgroups (8). Second, athetoid and dyskinetic syndromes occur in about 20% of the cases (8). This group has the slow, writhing movements and choreiform like movements of the distal extremities also (8). These movements cease during sleep and increase when they become upset. Speech impairment is also often found in these patients (8). Third, ataxics’ (10%) have cerebellar involvement, wide based gait, intention tremors, problems doing fine movements, and incoordination weakness (8). Fourth, mixed forms of the above named groups are the most common, with spastic and athetoid symptoms being the most often paired. Convulsive seizures are often found in CP patients which often adds to the problems (8). Other associated problems include cognitive impairment, vision and hearing impairments, problems with communication, emotional deficits, behavioral problems and feeding problems (3). Spastic hemiplegics and paraplegics are the most likely to be of normal intelligence (3). Hemiplegics have the lowest incidence of mental retardation with about 40% of them (3). In CP patients it appears that the higher the degree of spasticity the greater the other pr...

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...developmental disorder. Adv. Exp. Med. Biol., 1992, 318: 307-14.

3. Eicher, P. and Batshaw, M. Cerebral Palsy. Pediatr. Clin. North- Am., 1993, Jun; 40(3): 537-548.

4. Hughes, I. and Newton, R. Genetic Aspects of Cerebral Palsy. Dev. Med. Child Neurol., 1992, Jan; 34(1): 80-86.

5. Melone, P., Ernest, J., O’Shea, M., Klinepeter, K. Appropriateness of intrapartum fetal heart rate management and risk of Cerebral Palsy. Am. J. Obs. Gyn., 1991 (Aug.), 165: 272-277.

6. Powell, T. et. al. Cerebral Palsy in Low-birth weight Infants. II. Spastic Diplegia Associations with Fetal Immaturity. Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology, 1988, 30:19-25.

7. Vargha-Khadem, F. et. al. Development of intelligence and Memory in Children with Hemiplegic Cerebral Palsy. Brain, 1992, 115: 315-329.

8. The Merck Manual, Pediatrics and Genetics, Chpt. 198, pg. 2110.
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