Treatment for Birth Disorders

Treatment Options for Erb’s Palsy

Let’s say your child develops Erb’s Palsy after a nurse picks them up by their arms, negligently damaging the brachial plexus nerve. It is important to seek treatment quickly! Treatment is most successful when started shortly after birth for Erb’s Palsy, as with any other brachial plexus injury. If treated, there are typically no long-term residual effects after the nerves have healed. However, if left untreated, your child may suffer life-long effects of the injury, including total paralysis of the arm and shoulder and permanent weakness in the injured arm. In most cases, the treatment for Erb’s Palsy is daily physical therapy, focusing on maintaining the range of motion in the affected joints. However, if there is no improvement after the first 3 – 6 months, surgery might be required.

Treatment Options for Cerebral Palsy

The options available to treat CP vary widely based on the severity of the CP diagnosis and type. For the most severe cases, surgery might be the only path. However, for mild and medium-severity cases, a combination of therapies, assistive and orthotic devices, and medication can treat most of the injury symptoms.

Therapy for Cerebral Palsy

  • Occupational therapy helps children learn to perform everyday tasks like tying shoelaces and getting on the bus.
  • Recreational therapy boosts a child’s physical and intellectual skills through participation in extracurriculars.
  • Speech and language therapy is crucial for those children whose CP has affected their mouth muscles. This type of therapy will teach them to speak more clearly, and better control the throat and tongue muscles to reduce drooling problems.

Assistive and Orthotic Devices for Cerebral Palsy

  • Orthotic devices like braces and splints can be used to improve overall balance and movement.
  • Assistive devices and technologies include machines to aid in communication, low-tech solutions like communication boards, and movement assisting technology like wheelchairs.

Medications for Cerebral Palsy

  • Medications might be helpful as a muscle relaxant to reduce abnormal movement and prevent stiff or overactive muscles.
  • If seizures and/or epilepsy or coexisting conditions of the CP, anti-seizure medications might also be prescribed.

Doctors

If your child suddenly comes up with a problem, blaming your doctor is common because the doctor had a responsibility to protect your child. You may blame yourself wondering if you had gone to a different hospital if it may have changed things. While your distrust of doctors might even be for good reasons, you should understand how cerebral palsy doctors do their best to give you the best results. Most of them are experienced professionals and not all cases of CP could have been avoided.

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Exercise

No matter who you are, anyone can benefit from exercises because of how the benefits are widespread for everyone. Even children who have cerebral palsy have been shown to see benefits from getting exercise. They simply have to choose exercises that won’t be too difficult for them. Swimming has been shown to be a light form of aerobic exercise that many children can do without the need for assistance. Exercise for cerebral palsy is even more important because of how it can help your child to improve in his balance, coordination and strengthen his muscles.

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Surgery

You have some cases where your doctor might recommend that your child have a surgery after a birth disorder like cerebral palsy. What are the reasons for a recommendation like this? Through a successful surgery, deformities can be corrected in children with this illness. In addition, it improves the range of motion and their gait.

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Clinical Trials

Clinical trials have been used in the medical community as a way to understand treatments, medicines and medical equipment better. Through clinical trials, researchers learn if the trials will help them, hinder them or have no effect at all. This helps medical research to continue advancing, and in some cases, it gives you access to the latest and most advancement treatments available. You do have a difference between trials and regular treatment that your child receives. Trials should never replace your child’s regular healthcare. Even when your child takes a trial, they should still have regular checkups and care.

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Editor

Rae S, Editor

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kaitlinmorris

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Article Citations

  1. US Department of Health and Human Services
  2. WebMD
  3. OrthoInfo