Cerebral palsy is among the most common causes of childhood disability. About one in every 323 kids in the United States has the disorder, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Cerebral palsy can affect your child’s movement, balance and posture. Early intervention and rehabilitative therapies can have a positive impact on your child’s quality of life.

Our Pediatric Cerebral Palsy Program’s comprehensive services promote your child’s independence in things like movement, self-care and communication. We also provide you and other caregivers with techniques and activities to support your child’s therapy goals, which may include improved movement, management of sensory or perceptual challenges and ability to engage in daily activities like eating, dressing and bathing.

Your child will receive treatment from a multidisciplinary team of specialists which provides assessments to understand your child’s specific needs. They collaborate to provide ongoing management with a focus on things like your child’s orthopedic concerns, spasticity and functional goals.

Meanwhile, our therapists educate you and other caregivers on activities and techniques that support your child’s progress, such as how to comfortably position your child, stretching exercises and safe handling. We also coordinate with your child’s school therapists and other community providers to ensure your child’s success. We do this, in part, to ensure your child’s treatment can continue at home and other settings.

Depending on your child’s needs, his or her treatment team may recommend a variety of services, including:

• Physician evaluation and follow-up with specialists (who may include pediatric physicians or physiatrists, orthopedic specialists and experts in neurodevelopmental pediatrics and neurology)
Advanced Management of Pediatric Spasticity
• Nursing services/care coordination
• Assessment at the Motion Analysis Laboratory (computerized gait analysis)
• Therapeutic evaluation and treatment (including with a physical therapist and occupational therapist)
• Speech-language therapy evaluation and treatment, focusing on everything from articulation and voice, to behavior and communication
• Swallow study and feeding program
• Assessments for adaptive devices
• Coordination with orthotics (for such things as serial casting, splinting, braces and orthoses)
• Augmentative communication evaluation and training
• Coordination with our Rehab Technology Center for evaluations on everything from customized wheelchairs to assistive technologies
• Neuromuscular re-education/biofeedback evaluation and treatment
• Home and job-site evaluations
• Driver rehabilitation
• Wheelchair & Adaptive Sports

For those interested in participating in a research opportunity, Origins, Wellness & Life-History in CP (OWL) is conducting a research study of children ages 2-15, with and without cerebral palsy. OWL scientists hope to understand more about very early brain damage that causes cerebral palsy and how it could be prevented. Find more information via The Cerebral Palsy Outreach Network’s website.


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