Natural History of Cerebral Palsy and Outcome Assessment

  • Erich Rutz
  • Pam Thomason
Reference work entry


Cerebral palsy (CP) is defined as “a group of permanent disorders of the development of movement and posture, causing activity limitation, that are attributed to nonprogressive disturbances that occurred in the developing fetal or infant brain. The motor disorders of CP are often accompanied by disturbances of sensation, perception, cognition, communication, and behavior, by epilepsy; and by secondary musculoskeletal problems.” Though the neurological disturbance is nonprogressive, the natural history is for deterioration in gait and motor function due to musculoskeletal pathology.

The natural history and outcomes of musculoskeletal problems are discussed. The measurement tools and comprehensive assessment used to evaluate gross motor function and gait impairments in children with CP are presented.


Cerebral palsy Musculoskeletal deformity Assessment Gait Hip displacement Outcome 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Pediatric Orthopaedic DepartmentUniversity Children’s Hospital BaselBaselSwitzerland
  2. 2.Hugh Williamson Gait Analysis LaboratoryRoyal Children’s HospitalMelbourneAustralia

Section editors and affiliations

  • Freeman Miller
    • 1
  1. 1.duPont Hospital for ChildrenWilmingtonUSA

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