Could this be Cerebral Palsy — Scope | Disability forum
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Could this be Cerebral Palsy

Sonia1976 Member Posts: 2
edited September 2014 in Cerebral palsy
I am a foster carer to a 6 month old boy. He was born 5 weeks prem and I have had him since he was released from hospital at 11 days old. I have always felt that something wasn't quite right. His head is very large and was, for the first few months turned to the right and he would not turn to the left. Over time this has eased although he still favours looking to the right. He sticks his tongue out a lot and drools a great deal. When holding him, he doesn't relax, and arches his back away from you and is stiff and awkward to hold. He doesn't hold his head up as well as you would expect and also doesn't push with his legs if you hold him up. He doesn't roll over apart from a couple of accidental ones from front to back when his large head pulled him to one side.He lolls to the side when in his baby bouncer. I have just felt that I couldn't put my finger on what was wrong. Nobody has mentioned CP, but a consultant has requested a scan of his head as she wasn't happy with him. Any one feel that CP is a possibility. I just want to help him as much as I can.
Many thanks


  • mollymoobarnes
    mollymoobarnes Member Posts: 107

    Whilst I am no expert (my son Tom is 14 months old and has Spastic CP affecting all 4 limbs) I certainly think there is a possibility that Cerebral Palsy *may* be an explaination for those symptoms. I know some children with CP can favour turning one side over another (to do with muscle tone and possibly abnormal reflexes). I also know that tongue thrusting is an issue for some kids with cp, as is dribbling. I certainly know from my son that back arching, stiffness and appearring to 'not relax' are all part of his cp (thats what led us to know in our hearts that it wasn't 'colic' as the doctors diagnosed), as are not rolling (until about 2 months ago) and lolling to the side in the bouncer. However, your little chap is only 6 months old and his back and tummy muscles may just not be developed enough yet to support him. The head scan should help get to the bottom of it, although it depends what sort of scan (Tom had an MRI which revealed a brain injury wheras a cranial ultrasound did not). I think the best advice would be to treat him just as you would have done anyway but really encourage him to turn his head to the side he is reluctant to turn to using lots of jazzy stimulating toys, give him lots of floorplay time under a baby gym and encourage him to reach and give him lots of tummytime, maybe with a rolled-up towel under his chest and arms to give him some support. And enjoy him!
    Maz xxx
  • Sonia1976
    Sonia1976 Member Posts: 2
    Thanks for the reply Maz. I will certainly do as you suggest and encourage him with floor and tummy time to help strengthen his muscles. Have heard yesterday that the consultants request for a scan was turned down. Not sure where to go from here. I know that if he does have CP he will be diagnosed eventually and I will carry on with everything I am doing. My main concern is that it is a possibility that he will be put up for adoption within the next 6 months or so, and I want the full picture to be known as much as possible, for his sake. He is lovely and I do enjoy looking after him very much, and I want whoever adopts him to do the same. Thank you for the idea of a rolled up towel under his chest and arms. I will give it a go.
    Sonia xxx
  • mollymoobarnes
    mollymoobarnes Member Posts: 107

    That's tricky - a scan now would help you get that clearer picture but if that doesn't hapen then it will be just be a matter of waiting and watching how things unfold for him - both by you and then his adoptive parents. I know that they are not really able to even begin diagnosing cp until a child starts missing major milestones like rolling, crawling etc. For us the problem wasn't really noticed by professionals until his 10 month check when they saw for themselves what we had been saying - that he was really developmentally behind his twin. You can't do any more though can you - if the scan has been refused all you can do is keep flagging your concerns - I would advise keeping a little journal of your observatons - dates of things he has done or not done, etc so you have a written record.

    Best of luck and lots of love - I'm sure you are doing a grand job of giving him a loving home until a more permanent one can be found.



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