Late diagnosis of cerebral palsy in a 16-year-old girl – a case report
Department of Paediatrics, Paediatric Nephrology and Allergology, Military Institute of Medicine, Warsaw, Poland
Correspondence: Department of Paediatrics, Paediatric Nephrology and Allergology, Military Institute of Medicine, Szaserów 128, 04-141 Warsaw, Poland, tel.: +48 261 817 236, fax: +48 22 515 05 85, e-mail:
Pediatr Med Rodz 2018, 14 (4), p. 435–438
DOI: 10.15557/PiMR.2018.0060

Cerebral palsy is the most common cause of motor disability in children. Cerebral palsy is a static encephalopathy with a variable clinical picture and multifactorial aetiology. Disorders arise from disturbances in the early development of the brain in the foetal, perinatal or postnatal period. The disease affects around 17 million people worldwide; its incidence is estimated to be 1.5–3 per 1,000 live births. A slight male predominance is observed. The disease has a multifactorial aetiology, with prematurity being the most important risk factor. There are four types of cerebral palsy: spastic (the most common – (70%), dystonic (10%), mixed (15%) and ataxic (5%). In addition to motor disability of varying severity, the majority of patients present with other accompanying deficits, such as mental retardation, epilepsy, dysphagia, impaired hearing and vision. The diagnosis of cerebral palsy should be based on detailed medical history, including pregnancy and childbirth as well as a regular assessment of the child’s development from the first months of life. In the case of clinical doubts, the diagnosis is extended to include magnetic resonance imaging, electroencephalography, metabolic and genetic tests. Children with cerebral palsy require a comprehensive, multidisciplinary care, including physical therapy and rehabilitation. Bobath and Vojta concepts are the most common rehabilitation approaches. Early diagnosis and regular rehabilitation are crucial to ensure adequate quality of life for a child with cerebral palsy. The paper presents a case of a 16-year-old girl with a long history of pain in the lower limbs, spine and temporomandibular joints. The symptoms were accompanied by chest pain as well as numbness and weakness of the left upper limb.

Keywords: cerebral palsy, aetiology, disability, prematurity, spasticity