Cerebral palsy leading cause of child disability

Last Updated: Dec 04, 2010, 00:00 AM IST

New Delhi: Cerebral palsy, a brain-related disorder, is a major cause of disability among children and early diagnosis is crucial in treating the condition effectively, doctors said on World Disability Day Friday.

"Cerebral palsy can be dealt with affection, and if proper care of the child is taken. But, the problem is that people are unaware about this disorder. That is making it one of the major causes for disability among children," said Monika Juneja, incharge of child development clinic at Lok Nayak Hospital in the capital.

The disorder often occurs at a premature age, affecting the brain development of children.

"The child suffers from paucity of movement, poor balance and co-ordination and in some cases blindness, and severe cognitive impairment," Juneja added.

Doctors estimate up to 3 cases of cerebral palsy per 1,000 live births, while nearly 25 lakh individuals are affected by the disease in the country.

Early diagnosis of the disorder is crucial, believe experts.

"The earlier the treatment begins the more chances children have to overcome their disability," said Juneja.

Doctors also suggested that apart from regular physiotherapy and occupational therapy, emphasis also needs to be on creating awareness.

"There is a need to educate people on dispelling the social and medical myths associated with the disease. Cerebral palsy is curable, and is a development-related disorder," said G.P. Dureja from the Delhi Pain Management Centre.

IANS