Cerebral palsy (CP) is the result of damage to the premature brain, either during pregnancy, birth or early infant years. CP can lead to muscle weakness, incoordination of movements and affected muscle tone. CP can affect all four limbs (quadriplegia), lower limbs only (diplegia) or one side of the body (hemiplegia). CIMT is suitable for hemiplegic CP and specific quadriplegic cases.
The phenomenon observed in children with hemiplegia, who get used to ignoring their affected arm and hand as they grow up, has been termed as “developmental disregard”. Even children with minor hand movement difficulties tend to progressively learn to compensate using techniques of unilateral hand function during everyday activities, such as play. This compensation leads to further functional decrements as the muscles lose more of their strength, being underused. Research studies on children with CP have shown substantial improvements in quantity and quality of hand movement after application of CIMT. Our therapists’ evaluation will determine whether CIMT might be beneficial for you.