Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy or CP is a group of permanent disorders associated with developmental brain injuries that occur during fetal development, birth, or shortly after birth. It is characterized by a disruption of motor skills, with symptoms such as spasticity, paralysis, or seizures. Cerebral palsy is a form of static encephalopathy. The incidence is about 1.5 to 4 per 1000 live births. One form of it, spastic diplegia, is sometimes known as Little's disease in the United Kingdom. Properly speaking, the fact that CP does not get better or worse implies that it is a 'condition' (chronic non progressive neurological disorder) rather than a 'disease'. There is no cure, but therapy and Conductive Education has been shown to be helpful. Conversely, gait and posture can get worse over time if left untreated. While severity varies widely, cerebral palsy ranks among the most costly congenital conditions to manage.

Cerebral palsy has been described as something of an "umbrella term" in that it refers to a group of different conditions. It has been suggested that no two people with CP will have an identical case even if they have the same diagnosis.

Cerebral palsy develops while the brain is under development. 80% of all cases occur before the baby reaches 1 month old, however this disorder can occur within about the first 5 years of life. It is a non progressive disorder; once damage to the brain occurs, no additional damage occurs as a result of this condition. Cerebral palsy neither improves nor worsens, though symptoms may seem to increase with time, likely due to the aging process.