Cerebral palsy epidemiology and demographics

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]; Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief:

Overview

The incidence of cerebral palsy is approximately 150-250 per 100,000 live births worldwide. Decline in the trends of cerebral palsy is due to advances in perinatal care. The prevalence of different motor patterns of cerebral palsy has remained remarkably static over the last 20 years. Most patients are identified by 2 years of age due to delayed motor milestones. Cerebral palsy usually affects individuals of the black non-Hispanic children race. White non-Hispanic children are less likely to develop cerebral palsy. Males are more commonly affected by cerebral palsy than females. The male to female ratio is approximately 1.5 to 1.

Epidemiology and Demographics

Incidence

  • The incidence of cerebral palsy is approximately 150-250 per 100,000 live births worldwide.[1]
  • Decline in the trends of cerebral palsy is due to advances in perinatal care.
  • Patients with mild forms of cerebral palsy that do not result in severe functional impairment may remain undiagnosed, leading to underestimation of the true prevalence of cerebral palsy.

Prevelance

The prevalence of different motor patterns of cerebral palsy has remained remarkably static over the last 20 years.[2]

  • The prevalence of bilateral spastic cerebral palsy is approximately 120-150 per 100,000 individuals worldwide.
  • The prevalence of unilateral or hemiplegic cerebral palsy is approximately 60-80 per 100,000 individuals worldwide.
  • The prevalence of bilateral dystonic cerebral palsy is approximately 150-250 per 100,000 individuals worldwide.
Trends in birth prevalence of congenital Cerebral Palsy
Source:By American Academy of Pediatrics [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

Age

  • Cerebral palsy is more common in children who are born very prematurely.
  • Most patients are identified by 2 years of age due to delayed motor milestones.
Walking ability among 8 year old children with cerebral palsy
Source: By American Academy of Pediatrics [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

Race

  • Cerebral palsy usually affects individuals of the black non-Hispanic children race. White non-Hispanic children are less likely to develop cerebral palsy.

Gender

  • Males are more commonly affected by cerebral palsy than females. The male to female ratio is approximately 1.5 to 1.

References

  1. Odding E, Roebroeck ME, Stam HJ (2006). "The epidemiology of cerebral palsy: incidence, impairments and risk factors". Disabil Rehabil. 28 (4): 183–91. doi:10.1080/09638280500158422. PMID 16467053.
  2. "Surveillance of cerebral palsy in Europe: a collaboration of cerebral palsy surveys and registers. Surveillance of Cerebral Palsy in Europe (SCPE)". Dev Med Child Neurol. 42 (12): 816–24. 2000. PMID 11132255.

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