What is Cerebral Palsy?


Cerebral palsy is an umbrella term for a group of disorders that affect coordination, posture, and muscle movement. CP is caused by damage to the brain’s development before or during birth, and up to one year or so after birth. This damage can be congenital or through accident or neglect. Symptoms begin to show in early childhood, and can last a lifetime.


Cerebral palsy can vary in its symptoms. The most obvious are difficulty with body movement, coordination, posture, reflex, balance, and other muscular control. CP can also cause difficulties with learning, speech, epilepsy, hearing, and vision.

Cerebral palsy is known as a non-progressive disorder. While individual symptoms may change over the course of the patient’s life, the condition in general does not get worse over time. Therapy and specialized equipment can help with the symptoms, but cerebral palsy cannot be cured.

Types of Cerebral Palsy

There are four main types of cerebral palsy:

These categories are determined by the primary effects of the condition, which will vary according to which area or areas of the brain were damaged.

  • Spastic CP is marked by stiff muscles and/or limited range of motion.
  • Dyskinetic CP presents as uncontrollable muscle movements.
  • Ataxic CP is characterized by impaired balance and/or coordination.
  • Mixed CP will have two or more of the former.

If you think your child has or may have cerebral palsy because of something that happened at birth, please fill out the form on the Birth Injury Web official website..