Pediatric Neurology published research on 47 children diagnosed with cerebral palsy for ophthalmic disorders and their association with neurological disorders. All children were recommended to have comprehensive ophthalmic exams. The following assessments were completed: Gross Motor Function Classification System, Gross Motor Function Measure the Bayley Scales of Infant Development-II.
The results indicated the following:
1. ametropia (abnormal refractive eye condition) was seen in 78.7% of the children
2. strabismus (eyes are not aligned properly) was seen in 44.7% of the children.
3. ametropia was more prevalent in the severely impaired than the mildly impaired based on Gross Motor Function Classification System level.
4. the severity of gross motor impairment correlated with the degree of refractive error in the subjects older than 36 months.
The researchers concluded that "children with cerebral palsy with poor gross motor function have a high possibility of severe refractive disorder that becomes evident from 36 months after birth. These results suggest that brain injury and impaired motor development negatively affect ophthalmic development".
The researchers recommend an ophthalmic examination for young children with cerebral palsy for early detection and management.
Reference: Lew, Helen, et al. "Possible Linkage between Visual and Motor Development in Children with Cerebral Palsy." Pediatric Neurology (2014). Mar;52(3):338-343.e1. doi: 10.1016/j.pediatrneurol.2014.11.009. Epub 2014 Dec 3
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