Cerebral palsy, also known as Spastic paralysis, refers to a group of disorders that involve loss of movement or loss of other nerve function. It is caused by injuries to the cerebrum (the largest part of the brain) which occur as the baby grows in the womb or near the time of birth. Premature infants have a slightly higher rate of cerebral palsy. It may also occur during early infancy as a result of illnesses, infections or injuries. Affected children may have partial or full loss of movement, problems with hearing and vision, seizures and sensation abnormalities. Speech problems are common and intellect may or may not be affected.
There is no specific cure for cerebral palsy. Various laboratory tests may be performed to eliminate nutritional or other causes of the symptoms. The goal of treatment is to maximize independence. Treatment may include physical therapy, braces, appropriate glasses and hearing aids, medications, special education or appropriate schooling.
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