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Cerebral Palsy Surgery

Cerebral palsy is a group of disorders relating to the brain and to motor function.  There is usually some degree of motor impairment in the cerebral palsy patient.  Cerebral palsy is not a disease that is curable.  Nor is cerebral palsy a progressive disease because symptoms tend to stay the same, making them fairly easy to pinpoint and focus on during treatment.  There are also many different types of surgical procedures available for cerebral palsy patients. 

Skeletal problems in cerebral palsy patients can occur frequently.  There are several surgeries designed to stave off skeletal problems in cerebral palsy.  Many skeletal related surgeries have results that have resulted in patients walking better, sitting upright, or even developing their bones in a more structured way so that they will grow properly.  Spinal cord surgery can help straighten a curved spine and back.  Other types of surgery with skeletal problems tend to make using external devices such as wheelchairs easier.

Another type of surgery for cerebral palsy is called selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR).  SDR is a type of spinal surgery used to reduce the effects of spasticity in cerebral palsy victims.  SDR is usually given to children between the ages of 2 and 6 years old.  Selective dorsal rhizotomy surgery involves making a small incision in the vertebra.  Nerves are cut during the surgery and symptoms of spasticity are calmed as a result.  SDR can sometimes stop mild cerebral palsy symptoms completely.

Botox A injections are also types of surgeries given to cerebral palsy patients.  This type of surgery is very minimal and generally takes just a few minutes.  The patient usually leaves the doctor’s office after the surgery.  Botox A injections can be effective in calming overactive muscles.  The injections are administered at a fairly shallow level in the skin, and only in the places of incidence.  BTA has seen results in hip muscles, upper body, arms, legs, and even stems “tiptoe walking” – a side effect of calf and leg spasticity.

Tenotomy is another surgery that can alleviate symptoms of cerebral palsy.   Tenotomy is the process of cutting or dividing a tendon, usually in the legs.  The treated body part is then put into a cast or some other device for straightening.  The limb then grows in a more structured environment and without the restrictions and stiffness of before.  Tenotomy can be used as preventive surgery for cerebral palsy as well, because certain muscle spasticity can result in further damage to the body, like a hip fracture.

In all cases, consult with your cerebral palsy surgeon and doctor thoroughly to pursue only the best treatment options for cerebral palsy.  If the cerebral palsy is a result of a medical mistake, you may be eligible to have all of the costs of the surgery paid for.  Contact an experienced cerebral palsy surgery lawyer through this Web site for a free consultation.


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