Monday, April 6, 2009

Motor and Mental Skills in Toddlers with CP

Developmental Neurorehabilitation published research on the association between mental and motor functioning in children with CP. This study looked at 78 toddlers with a diagnosis of cerebral palsy with GMFCS I-V. The researchers determined that when motor and mental functioning did not develop at the same time, it was always motor functioning that was more delayed than mental functioning. No children performed better on the motor section than the mental section.

This study can help therapists in everyday practice. I think first and foremost NEVER assume that a child's mental age is equal to their motor age. It is our job to inform parents and school staff of this important information for young children with cerebral palsy. Any other thoughts on how the information can be put into practice?

Reference: Lotte Enkelaar ; Marjolijn Ketelaar; Jan Willem Gorter Association between motor and mental functioning in toddlers with cerebral palsy Developmental Neurorehabilitation, Volume 11, Issue 4 2008 ,pages 276 - 282 .

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