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All you need to know about Cerebral Palsy

Is your child facing problems with their movement, coordination, balance, and posture? Then you might want them to get checked at Plexus for Cerebral Palsy with world-renowned neurologist Dr Na’eem Sadiq. But before you go for your consultation, here is a detailed guide about the disorder.

All you need to know about Cerebral Palsy
Decoding Cerebral Palsy

Decoding Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral Palsy is a group of neurological disorders that affect movement, muscle tone, coordination, and motor skills, caused by injury to or abnormalities in the developing brain.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Cerebral Palsy affects 1 to 4 out of every 1000 children worldwide. It is a non-progressive condition that arises out of damage to the brain tissue incurred during pregnancy, childbirth, or early infancy. However, some children may even acquire the disorder later on, as a result of accidents, neglect, or abuse.

Symptoms of Cerebral Palsy

The symptoms of Cerebral Palsy vary from person to person, ranging from mild to severe. It also depends on the part of the brain that was affected. For instance, some people with Cerebral Palsy can face difficulties in walking. While others may have trouble grasping the simplest objects. Some of the common symptoms of Cerebral Palsy include:
Exaggerated and involuntary movement
Rigid or floppy limbs
Awkward gait
Poor balance
Partial paralysis
Difficulty speaking and swallowing
Intellectual impairment
Vision problems
Seizures
Causes of Cerebral Palsy

Causes of Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy is caused by abnormal brain development or damage to the developing brain during pregnancy, at birth, or in early infancy. In many cases, the exact cause of the disorder is unknown. Some of the factors that can lead to Cerebral Palsy include:
  • Gene mutations resulting in genetic disorders or differences in brain development
  • Maternal infections affecting the developing fetus
  • Fetal stroke causing disruption of blood supply to the developing brain
  • Bleeding into the brain in the womb or as a newborn
  • Infant infections causing inflammation in or around the brain
  • Traumatic head injury during infancy
  • Lack of oxygen supply to the brain due to difficult labor or delivery

Treatments for Cerebral Palsy

The type of treatment required for Cerebral Palsy depends on the severity of its symptoms. While some individuals may only have mild tremors and muscle stiffness that can be overcome with Physiotherapy. Others may be more severely affected to the point of being unable to talk. Such patients might need Speech and Language Therapy in addition to Occupational Therapy. Some of the commonly prescribed treatments for Cerebral Palsy include:

Physical Therapy

Physical Therapy

Physiotherapy plays a considerable role in easing Cerebral Palsy symptoms in children and adults. Through exercise and assistive devices, patients become stronger and are more flexible overall, with a better sense of balance. They can also develop stamina, posture, and coordination and improve overall physical health. Moreover, they achieve a significant increase in confidence levels when they successfully perform daily tasks on their own.

Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapists work to help patients gain independence when performing daily activities, or adopting a routine at home, in school, out in public, and at work. The goal is to foster independence, productivity, and self-care, in order to improve their quality of life. Occupational therapists assist individuals with improving strength, dexterity, and coordination while performing various day-to-day tasks. They also assess and help enable better decision-making, abstract reasoning, problem solving, perception, memory, and sequencing.
Occupational Therapy
Speech and Language Therapy

Speech and Language Therapy

Speech-language pathologists help improve the patient’s ability to speak clearly or communicate using sign language. They also teach the individual about the use of communication devices, such as a computer and voice synthesizer, if there are difficulties in communicating. Apart from this, speech therapists also address difficulties with eating and swallowing.

Our treatment program at Plexus

We believe in adopting an all-inclusive approach to maximize independence in daily activities and improve the quality of life for our patients with Cerebral Palsy. Under the guided supervision of Dr Na’eem Sadiq, we provide the most advanced  neurological treatment for Cerebral Palsy.

We provide a customized intensive rehabilitation program for Cerebral Palsy that includes Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, and Speech and Language Therapy. 

Our team uses a wide range of rehabilitation techniques as part of our Cerebral Palsy treatment program, including:

 

Postural Training
Activities of Daily Living Training
Pre-Academic Skills Training
Postural Correction and Balance
Developmental Therapy
Balance Training
Reflex Integration Therapy
Hand Splinting
Corrective Splinting
Stretching Exercises
Handwriting Training

Hand Function Training

Cognitive Rehabilitation Therapy
Adaptive Technology Training
Postural Reactions Training

What our patients say

FAQs answered

Physiotherapists focus primarily on stretching and flexibility exercises to ease contractures. They improve the range of motion of joints, increase strength and conditioning of the affected muscles, and improve coordination in patients with Cerebral Palsy. Postural training and endurance training are also important treatment aspects in Physiotherapy.
The rehabilitation of children with Cerebral Palsy requires a multidisciplinary approach with a specialized focus on Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy, and Speech and Language Therapy.
There is no best therapy for Cerebral Palsy, the symptoms of CP can be managed using a wide range of therapies such as Stem Cell Therapy, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Speech and Language Therapy.
Cerebral Palsy often affects the part of the brain that controls speech. This leads to individuals experiencing oral motor functioning issues such as trouble forming sentences or using the correct words. In some instances, patients may also struggle with expressing themselves.
There is no cure for Cerebral Palsy, and hence, a child will not outgrow the condition. However, it will also not get worse with time. Early therapy and treatment can help in better management of Cerebral Palsy symptoms.

Individuals with Cerebral Palsy can expect to live as long as other people without the condition. However, they need certain Cerebral Palsy treatment guidelines, therapy, and medication to improve their quality of life.

Dysarthria is a common consequence of brain damage that can develop due to Cerebral Palsy. Almost 90% of children with the disorder show signs of Dysarthria.
Individuals with Cerebral Palsy lead as normal a life as possible. However, they may need certain treatment, therapies, and medication owing to their condition.
Doctors usually use a combination of Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy, and Speech and Language Therapy, along with the newest treatments for Cerebral Palsy to help patients manage their condition.

The three major types of Cerebral Palsy include:

Spastic Cerebral Palsy

This is the most common type of Cerebral Palsy, affecting about 80% of all patients. Also known as Hypertonic Cerebral Palsy, it is caused due to motor cortex damage before, during, or after birth. It affects the brain’s ability to send messages to the body’s muscles. As a result, muscles become stiff and make movement difficult or even impossible — a phenomenon known as spasticity. 

Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy

Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy accounts for about 6% of all Cerebral Palsy cases. It is caused due to damage in the basal ganglia — the part of the brain responsible for the body’s voluntary movements. Patients with Dyskinetic Cerebral Palsy often exhibit involuntary movements, especially when trying to move voluntarily or when feeling tired or anxious. Dyskinetic movements can be of three types:

  • Dystonia: Twisted and repetitive movements
  • Athetosis: Slow, stormy movements
  • Chorea: Unpredictable, dance-like movements

Ataxic Cerebral Palsy

Ataxic Cerebral Palsy is caused due to damage in the cerebellum, which is the balance center of the brain. It affects the patient’s sense of balance and causes clumsy, uncoordinated movements. As a result, day-to-day activities become difficult, particularly activities that require precise movements such as writing or using cutlery while eating. Patients with Ataxic Cerebral Palsy may even walk with a wide gait where their feet are spread further apart from their hips. This is to try and compensate for their impaired sense of balance.

Ataxic Cerebral Palsy is caused by damage to the cerebellum, which is responsible for coordinating physical movement. Individuals with the condition often experience tremors and a reduction in muscle tone. It also causes issues with balance, coordination, and voluntary movement.
Ataxic Cerebral Palsy accounts for about 6% of all Cerebral Palsy cases.

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