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Managing Spasticity in Children With Cerebral Palsy Requires a Team Approach - featured May 12, 2011

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Managing Spasticity in Children With Cerebral Palsy Requires a Team Approach

Source: Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare

Contributing authors: James Gage, M.D., Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgeon; Mark Gormley Jr., M.D., Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine Physician; Linda Krach, M.D., Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine Physician; Sue Murr, P.T.; Michael Partington, M.D., Pediatric Neurosurgeon; Kara Pittman, M.S.W.; Patrick Rivard, R.N.; and Candace Vegter, S.L.P., C.C.C.

It’s estimated that a half-million children and adults in America have some type of cerebral palsy — a form of brain damage that affects muscle tone and control. Each year, approximately 8,000 infants and 15,000 preschool-age children are diagnosed with cerebral palsy. It’s estimated that more than 75 percent of children with cerebral palsy have spasticity or abnormally high muscle tone. Spasticity in a growing child frequently leads to deformities, such as muscle contractures (muscles that are too short) and bone deformities. Which parts of children’s bodies are affected by the abnormal muscle tone depends upon where the brain damage occurs.

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Tags: Article SLP Cerebral Palsy PT OT Newsletter 13 May 2011