Risk Factors for Developing Cerebral Palsy

Living reference work entry


Cerebral palsy is a static neurologic condition resulting from brain injury that occurs before cerebral development is complete. The clinical phenotype of cerebral palsy may result from specific etiologies such as congenital anomalies/maldevelopments or from acquired brain injury during the prenatal, perinatal, or postnatal periods, due to brain ischemia/asphyxia, trauma, hemorrhage, infection, or stroke. When the specific etiology cannot be accurately diagnosed, the current assumption supported by ample scientific evidence is that cerebral palsy is most of the time related to prenatal neuropathology resulting from the interplay of genetic factors and environmental triggers, together leading to various pathways of injury. Many risk factors have been implicated in this process and have been correlated with increased prevalence of cerebral palsy. Some of these factors seem to operate in infants of all gestational ages, and others are only associated with either full-term or premature birth. Overall, preterm birth, intrauterine growth retardation, perinatal infection, and multiple births are considered the commonest risk factors associated with cerebral palsy.


Cerebral palsy risk factors Prematurity Intrauterine growth retardation Multiple birth Assisted reproductive technology Chorioamnionitis Congenital infections Coagulopathies Perinatal hypoxia/ischemia Neonatal risk factors 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Iaso Children’s HospitalAthensGreece
  2. 2.Department of OrthopaedicsPendeli Children’s HospitalAthensGreece

Section editors and affiliations

  • Steven Bachrach
    • 1
  1. 1.Al duPont Hospital for ChildrenWilmingtonUSA

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