Cerebral palsy is a group of conditions that affect a person’s ability to control the body and move. It is the most frequent cause of movement issues in children.
The doctors at Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican hospitals have extensive experience in diagnosing and treating children and adults with neurological conditions, including cerebral palsy, in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV. Call (702) 616-4900 or Find a Doctor online today.
Causes of Cerebral Palsy
The cause of cerebral palsy isn’t always known. Sometimes, cerebral palsy may be caused by:
- Lack of oxygen during birth or while in the womb.
- Infections during pregnancy, including toxoplasmosis, chickenpox, German measles (rubella), and cytomegalovirus.
- Gene mutations. Mutations that happen spontaneously or randomly can cause cerebral palsy and unusual brain development. However, cerebral palsy does not seem to be passed down in families.
- Bleeding in the brain. Some babies experience bleeding in the brain (stroke) before birth, which leads to cerebral palsy.
- Traumatic head injury after birth, such as a fall or motor vehicle accident, can cause brain damage and cerebral palsy.
- Exposure to toxic substances, including mercury.
Cerebral Palsy Symptoms
Symptoms of cerebral palsy include:
- Uncontrollable movements
- Stiff muscles
- Poor or unusual posture
- Difficulty speaking or swallowing
- Intellectual disabilities
- Poor balance and coordination
Sometime the symptoms of cerebral palsy affect just one part of the body, such as the legs but not the arms, or the right side of the body but not the left. Cerebral palsy may not be immediately recognized at birth, especially in preterm infants.
Cerebral Palsy Treatment at Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican
There is no known cure for cerebral palsy. Medical treatments include:
- Physical, speech, and occupational therapy to develop the skills, strategies, and strength needed to navigate daily life.
- Surgery to relax extremely stiff muscles or to adjust your child’s joints and bones.
- Medication to improve movement and relax stiff muscles.
- Assistive devices, including splints, braces, crutches, and walkers, to help children move safely and maintain body position.
You can decrease your child’s risk of developing cerebral palsy by:
- Avoiding exposure to harmful chemicals
- Keeping your immunizations up to date
- Seeing a health care provider for regular checkups throughout your pregnancy
Basic infant safety precautions, such as securing your baby in a car seat, can lower the chances of your child acquiring cerebral palsy from head trauma.
Dignity Health - St. Rose Dominican offers neurological care, including treatments for cerebral palsy, in Las Vegas and Henderson, NV.