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Does my child have CP?

It is usual that a mother, even a first time mum, is the first to realise things are not quite right as their baby starts to have purposeful movements. Or sometimes a baby has had a difficult start in life, born prematurely or is very sick after birth and the doctor regularly checks how the child develops.

Often though CP as a diagnosis is not considered until the baby is a few months old. There are special assessments that a Paediatric Neurologist or Specialist Physiotherapist can do to see if development is progressing normally or not.

We know that all children develop by achieving milestones that can be universally recognised as being the order in which skills are acquired. These milestones depend on the development of the brain and the body and rely on the experiences a child has in her or his everyday life.

So a baby learns to control his head and lean on his outstretched arms before he can sit alone. He learns to babble and listen and practises sounds, before he uses words. He will pull himself up to stand and will promptly fall down on his bottom many times before he takes his first step alone.

This website gives a lot of information on the developing child:

http://pathways.org/milestones/

If your baby is not mAKing progress in attaining milestones, if you notice he is very stiff when you handle him or lie him down, or he is more than two months old and is very “floppy” when you pick him up, then he needs an assessment to see if he is having problems that may be CP related.

At AKi we use our detailed knowledge of normal development, our understanding of neurological development and our careful observation and the medical history of the child to help us determine if a child is showing signs of CP. We follow the “Surveillance of Cerebral Palsy Europe” criteria for diagnosis and classification.

Here are some pictures to show some of the signs of atypical development that mean you need  to bring your child for a check up. These pictures are reproduced courtesy of Pathways.org.

If you have any concerns that your baby or child may have Cerebral Palsy o,r another motor developmental delay please contact Akbar Kare Institute for an appointment for a check- up.

Figure 1 Recognising Early Motor Delays

Figure 2 Recognising Early Motor Delays

Figure 3 Recognising Early Motor Delays

Figure 4 Recognising Early Motor Delays