Orthopedic Surgery for Cerebral Palsy and Birth Disorders

The Goal of Surgery

A doctor will usually only consider prescribing orthopedic surgery if it will lead to an improved quality of life for your child. For example, if surgery will improve their mobility or coordination, the doctor may consider it the best course of action. In most cases though, it is only considered as a last resort. Doctors will initially recommend medications or physical therapy because it comes with less serious implications for the child. The doctor will only undertake something like surgery if he or she believes that it could significantly improve your child’s quality of life.

Limiting and Painful Conditions

Cerebral palsy is a birth disorder that isn’t progressive but it is also not curable. Living with this condition can limit your child or cause them discomfort. While you can’t cure it, you can manage cerebral palsy in order to reduce the pain and improve your child’s quality of life.  Muscle contracture has become one of the most painful and common symptoms of CP. It happens when muscles have been overly toned. Children with CP will often have excessive muscle tone, resulting in shortened muscles.  In some cases, doctors perform Botox injections as a way to treat this condition.

Scoliosis

CP has the potential to cause a condition known as scoliosis. This refers to an abnormal curvature of the spine, with the back muscles not adequately supporting the spine. If the scoliosis is left untreated, it continues to progress.  Management depends on the degree of curvature and the patient’s symptoms.  Often when a child has CP and scoliosis, a doctor will attempt to manage this using a back brace.  This supports the spine in such a way that it encourages normal growth. If the degree of curvature continues to progress or the patient develops complications from scoliosis, then surgery is considered.

Surgery addresses pain and other conditions that can arise as a result of CP. The aim of surgery is to improve the individual’s condition or correct some of the severe limitations that they may have. Some of the things that it can help with include tremors, joint problems, hearing difficulties, spinal deformities, joint problems, and muscle spasticity. When the benefits outweigh the risks, that’s normally when a doctor will give their approval for surgery. Surgical intervention in the case of birth injury may not be the best choice for every patient. Even a minor surgery will come with its own fair share of risks, so it is important to weigh the pros and cons carefully. If your child suffers from a birth disorder, it may be due to medical negligence. Discuss your options regarding filing a lawsuit.

Editor

Rae S, Editor

View Profile

Expert

Elena Amato Borrelli, Expert

View Profile