مستشفى المواساةمخرج 9 شارع أبي جعفر المنصور ، غرناطة ، الرياض 13241 ، المملكة العربية السعودية, الرياض
أليانز السعودي الفرنسي
Cerebral palsy (CP) refers to a group of non-progressive disorders of posture and movement that limit activity. It is caused by injury to the brain occurring during its development, whether in the foetus during pregnancy, during birth, or in the first few years of life.
Today, CP is the most common cause of motor dysfunction in children. Motor dysfunction is often accompanied by perceptual, sensory, cognitive or communication impairments, musculoskeletal disorders or epilepsy.
CP can be classified according to when the brain injury occurred:
CP can also be classified according to the particular motor dysfunction present:
The prognosis of CP, including its severity and possible complications, depends on many factors. A better prognosis of CP can be made when the child is around 2-3 years of age, as movement problems can stabilise around then. If symptoms are more severe, especially if they affect basic functions such as swallowing or breathing, the child’s life expectancy may be reduced. If the child has a certain level of autonomy (they are able to walk or perform other functions independently), their life expectancy will be greater, and the prognosis is better. It has been calculated that a child with severe CP may reach 30 years of age whilst a child with moderate CP may reach between 60 and 80 years of age.
The symptoms vary according to the severity of CP, with some children having milder symptoms and others having more severe symptoms.
Symptoms of CP include:
In some children, CP causes attention, perception, memory, reasoning or language problems, making them more likely to have social problems or experience mental health issues.
An early diagnosis is crucial but may be very difficult. Generally, the diagnosis is not made until several months or even years after birth, including cases of congenital CP. In this respect, any information that parents can provide to doctors about antenatal, natal and postnatal history is extremely useful.
To establish a diagnosis, a full physical examination will be carried out, with special attention given to the child’s psychomotor development. A general neurological examination will also be carried out. If deemed necessary, other investigations may include laboratory tests, neuroimaging studies, electrophysiology studies, and metabolic and genetic analyses.
CP is caused by impaired or abnormal brain development, normally occurring before birth. Some of the causes are:
With appropriate care of pregnant woman and later her baby, certain risk factors can be eliminated. Prenatal, natal and postnatal factors potentially involved in the development of CP should be given due consideration.
Some of the recommendations are as follows:
There are no curative treatments for CP but there are several treatments that can help the child maintain their quality of life.
The disorder is treated by a multidisciplinary team of specialists who can focus on improving movements, stimulating intellectual development or achieving a level of communication that benefits social relationships.
Some of the possible treatments include:
CP should be treated by a multidisciplinary team of specialists including paediatricians, neurologists, neurosurgeons, orthopaedic surgeon, physiotherapists, speech therapists and psychologists.