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Monday, September 27, 2010 10:51:27 PM 
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Cerebral palsy (CP)

Cerebral palsy (CP) is a group of motor problems and physical disorders related to a brain injury. CP causes uncontrolled reflex movements and muscle tightness (spasticity) that may affect a part, a side, or the entire body, with varying severity. Several conditions, such as mental retardation, seizures, or vision and hearing problems, are often also associated with cerebral palsy.

What causes cerebral palsy?

Cerebral palsy is caused by a brain injury or problem that occurs during fetal growth, birth, or within the first 2 to 3 years of life. CP can result from:

    * Complications related to prematurity.
    * Being deprived of blood, oxygen, or other nutrients before or during birth.
    * A serious head injury.
    * Developing a serious infection that can affect the brain, such as meningitis.
    * Some conditions that are passed from parent to child (genetic conditions) that are linked to abnormal brain development.

In many cases, the exact cause of the injury is not known.

What are the symptoms?

Everyone with cerebral palsy (CP) has problems with body movement and posture, although the degree of physical disability varies. Some people with CP have only a slight limp or an uncoordinated walk. Others have little or no control over their arms and legs or other parts of their body, such as their mouths and tongues. People with severe forms of cerebral palsy are more likely to have other problems, such as seizures or mental retardation.

Babies born with severe CP often have an irregular posture; their bodies may be either very floppy or very stiff. Birth defects, such as an irregularly shaped spine, small jawbone, or small head, sometimes occur along with cerebral palsy.

Although CP does not get worse over time, symptoms may appear, change, or become more severe as a child gets older. This is why some babies born with CP do not show obvious signs right away.

How is cerebral palsy diagnosed?

Cerebral palsy (CP) usually takes several months to several years to diagnose. However, most children with CP are diagnosed by about 18 months of age. If a child is born with a severe form of CP, a health professional may be able to diagnose the condition within the first few weeks of life. However, parents and caregivers usually are the first to notice that a baby has developmental delays that may be early signs of CP.

Usually a health professional diagnoses cerebral palsy based on a baby's medical history (including parents' observations of developmental delays), physical examination, and results of screening tests.

Additional tests, such as developmental questionnaires, computed tomography (CT) scan or magnetic resonance image (MRI) of the head, or an ultrasound of the brain may be done. These tests can help a health professional determine the cause of CP.

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Our mission is to educate the general public on stem cell therapies now available to treat common neurological diseases and injuries.

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This page will explain stem cell therapies.  It answer many questions you may have regarding stem cell therapy for many common neurological disorders, such as Parkinson's disease, stroke and multiple sclerosis
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