Chapter: Diseases of The Brain and Nervous System(A Health Education Guide): Cerebral Palsy

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Causes of Cerebral Palsy

In some cases, cerebral palsy occurs due to oxygen deficiency during birth. In majority of the cases it occurs during pregnancy due to the environment in the womb or defects in development of the fetus. It is occasionally genetic.

Causes :

In some cases, cerebral palsy occurs due to oxygen deficiency during birth. In majority of the cases it occurs during pregnancy due to the environment in the womb or defects in development of the fetus. It is occasionally genetic.

As we have seen cerebral palsy results from brain damage, the causes are as follows:

(A)

Prenatal (before birth)

1.   Premature delivery.

2.   Viral infection to the mother during pregnancy.

3.   Rh -Bloodgroup incompatibility.

4.   Hereditory diseases.

5.   Maternal diseases during pregnancy, problems of fetal development.

(B) Perinatal (during birth)

1.   Prolonged labour or abnormality of fetal heart rate.

2.   Injury to the baby’s scalp during delivery.

3.   Umbilical cord around the baby’s neck leading to the       brain damage during labour.

(C) Postnatal (after birth)

1.   Seizures

2.   Pathological jaundice

3.   Hypoglycemia.

4.   Infection - septicemia .

5.   Hypocalcemia.

6.   Edema in the brain.

7.   Meningitis, ‘’encephalitis.

Hence if required, incubator care should be made available for the newborn. However, it is not possible to define a cause in every patient. Many of these causes are preventable, for this, public awareness is a must.

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