Cerebral palsy, referred to CP, is a set of neurological conditions caused by brain damage, affecting body movement and muscle coordination; it is a brain abnormality that does not progress in severity. Currently, an increasing number of children are diagnosed with cerebral palsy, this rise is probably due to the effectiveness in taking care of newborn babies who were born prematurely and have a low birth weight, accounting for 10% out of 800,000 babies born each year. Consequently, there are more premature babies who are at risk of developing cerebral palsy, including a case of children who got an accident approximately 200,000 patients per year.
The cause of Cerebral Palsy
There is no single cause of cerebral palsy. 20 percent of cerebral palsy remains unknown. Abnormal development of the brain mostly occurs while a child's brain is still developing during the pregnancy before birth until approximate age 7-8 years.
For some babies, cerebral palsy is attributed to issues arising during pregnancy, linked with virus infection such as (German measles), and cytomegalovirus (CMV), vascular conditions, metabolic problems, exposure to toxic substances of mother before birth.
During Labor and Delivery
A difficult delivery can be the cause of most cases of cerebral palsy. Umbilical cord compression and birth asphyxia can harm infant’s brain. This includes premature babies with very low birth weight, infection, jaundice, low sugar level, brain damage and bleeding within the brain.
Some injuries or trauma after birth and meningitis that do not properly managed and treated can damage the child’s brain and lead to cerebral palsy.
Symptoms of Cerebral Palsy
The symptom of CP can be mild or severe depending on the area of the affected brain. Symptoms found involve delay in development, having difficulty in sitting up, walking, speech and language, abnormal muscle tone, and unusual posture.
Cerebral Palsy Treatment
Cerebral palsy is a complex disability; sign and symptoms vary from one individual to another especially the movement and motor development. When parents notice that their infant is not developing normally, they should consult with the pediatrician immediately for more effective treatment, an assessment of child’s movements and learning abilities will be carried out to check for the severity of the problem. Medical assessment and physical examination from multidisciplinary team will be done to define the objective of the treatment, and design the appropriate physical therapy for each child. Benefits of physical therapy are to help improve motor skill, prevent movement problem from getting worse and give children more independence. Which kind of physical therapy is suitable will be based on the severity and type of cerebral palsy.
Pediatric center at Phyathai 2 Hospital is staffed with a multidisciplinary team to treat a child with cerebral palsy. Developmental pediatrician, child neurologist, pediatric orthopedic specialist, physical therapist, and occupational therapist will be working together to provide tailored treatment. Physiotherapy, speech and language therapy may be used with other treatments and medications to improve condition of cerebral palsy and enhance functional abilities, so that children can live as comfortably as possible.
You may find our specialist here at Pediatric Center, Phyathai 2 Hospital
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