Cerebral Palsy

  • Cerebral Palsy is a disease that can affect children and adults in different ways. 

  • Cerebral Palsy is an incurable disorder involving muscle coordination issues, varying from mild to extreme in terms of severity.
  • Cerebral Palsy is not one disease with a single origin, like chicken pox or measles. It is a group of disorders that are related but probably stem from a number of different causes. When physicians diagnose Cerebral Palsy in an individual child, they look at risk factors, the symptoms, the motherís and childís medical history, and the onset of the disorder.

  • Riding horses benefits many people with disabilities, particularly autism and cerebral palsy. The constant movement of horses seems to require the riders to constantly adjust their balance. Riders, as young as age 3, are accompanied by a leader who helps guide the horse,  This appears to improve the rider's focus, core strength, balance, and communication skills. 

Statistics
  • About 750,000 Americans are affected by Cerebral Palsy each year: a disorder that can, in some cases, be completely prevented.

  • Each year, 10,000 children are diagnosed in the United States. 
  • Premature birth is linked to some Cerebral Palsy incidents.
  • Asphyxia has been linked to causes of Cerebral Palsy.  Essentially, the vital oxygen that the individualís brain requires for adequate functioning is cut off for a period of time, resulting in brain damage. That brain damage in turn can result in Cerebral Palsy. Consequently, accidents and injuries that involve trauma to the head and that result in brain damage can also result in Cerebral Palsy.
  • Extreme infections that affect the brain can have an end result of Cerebral Palsy; meningitis and encephalitis fall under this category. In fact, certain infections can travel to the brain and cause irreparable damage.
  • Acquired Cerebral Palsy.  About 10 to 20 percent of children who have Cerebral Palsy acquire the disorder after birth, while many more cases are caused by an incident that occurs during pregnancy or birth. Acquired Cerebral Palsy is the result of brain damage in the first few months or years of life.

Local Organizations
Additional Resources

Cerebral Palsy
http://www.cerebralpalsy.org/
(NOTE:  This site is sponsored by Attorney Ken Stern in Michigan.)

Cerebral Palsy Symptoms
http://www.cerebralpalsysymptoms.com/
Cerebral Palsy and other common birth injuries.