Cerebral palsy is a neurological movement disorder present at birth. Children often develop noticeable symptoms by the time they are three years old.
If you have concerns about cerebral palsy symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment, Dignity Health Central California can help. Our experienced neurologists and other specialists at our hospitals provide advanced neurological care for cerebral palsy in Central California:
Use our online Find a Doctor tool to select a qualified provider knowledgeable in the treatment of cerebral palsy.
What Causes Cerebral Palsy?
Injury or damage to a baby’s brain while the brain is still developing can cause cerebral palsy. The damage occurs in specific parts of the brain responsible for normal, coordinated muscle movement.
Premature birth, exposure to toxins, and infection in the fetus or the mother are known causes of brain injury or damage, but doctors do not know the exact cause in most cases. Cerebral palsy is not inherited. You can control some cerebral palsy risk factors with comprehensive prenatal care and an experienced labor and delivery team.
Symptoms of Cerebral Palsy
The earliest signs of cerebral palsy we look for in toddlers are developmental delays and problems with balance and coordination.
Other signs and symptoms may include:
- Abnormal muscle tone, either rigid or floppy muscles
- Abnormal posture
- Stiff muscles or muscle spasms (spasticity)
- Vision and hearing problems
- Walking or gait problems, such as dragging a leg or walking on the toes instead of the heels
Treating Cerebral Palsy at Dignity Health Central California
Our doctors and therapists tailor treatment of cerebral palsy to the specific symptoms and challenges of each child. With early intervention, we help many children go on to live full, rewarding lives.
With cerebral palsy, treatment strategies address symptoms and long-term effects, such as learning disabilities. Your treatment options may include medications, surgery, physical therapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy to help with activities of daily living and assistive technologies, such as vision and hearing aids, and braces, walkers, and wheelchairs.
Talk to your doctor to learn more about the expert treatment of cerebral palsy we offer, paired with humankindness.
Dignity Health Central California neurologists deliver personal care for cerebral palsy in Bakersfield, and Stockton, CA.