Cerebral palsy: A comprehensive review

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Cerebral palsy is a broad range of static, nonprogressive motor disabilities that present from birth or early childhood as a result of injury to neuromotor components of the central nervous system. Motor performance is normally coordinated via communication between the cerebral cortex, thalamus, basal ganglia, brain stem, cerebellum, spinal cord, and communicating sensori-motor pathways. This complex network lends itself to injury at many different levels. Etiologies are numerous and can occur during the prenatal, perinatal, and postnatal periods. The severity of the neurologic deficit and the clinical manifestations are varied depending on the time, location and nature of the original injury. In order to approach cerebral palsy systematically, the primary health care practitioner must be prepared to recognize neuromotor deficits, diagnose and classify the type of disorder, and implement a methodical treatment plan. The purpose of this article is to review the etiology, pathophysiology, diagnostic classification (Swedish system), clinical manifestations, and therapeutic management of cerebral palsy and prepare the advanced practice nurse to care for the individual and family.


Cerebral palsy; Nursing


Family Practice Nursing | Neurology | Neurosciences | Nursing | Pediatric Nursing

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