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Is there only one type of CP?
The straight facts on CP
The Answer is no..
There are 4 types of Cerebral Palsy. The first one, Spastic CP, affects 70 to
80% of people who have CP. With Spastic Cerebral Palsy, the muscles are very
stiff, and permanently contracted. Doctors can tell which type of Spastic CP a
person has by which limbs are affected. The term PLEGIA, which means
paralyzed, or weak, is tacked on the end of each form of Spastic CP. Examples
are HemiPLEGIA (one side of the body is affected) and QuadriPLEGIA (all 4
limbs affected). * i know i know, big doctor's type teminology huh? well just
keep reading :) * Sometimes both legs can be affected. They can turn in and
cross at the knees. This is called scissoring, and can interfere with their
walking ability. Some with Spastic CP may experience hemiparetic tremors.
Hemiparetic tremors are uncontrollable shaking, affecting the limbs on only
one side of a persons body. Sometimes the tremors are severe, and can affect
The second type, Athetoid or Dyskinetic CP affects 10-20% of people who have
CP. People with Athetoid Cerebral Palsy will have uncontrolled, slow
movements. These movements will often affect the hands, feet, arms, or legs.
Sometimes the muscles in a persons face or tongue will be affected, causing
drooling. These movements a person with Athetoid CP has, will often increase
during stressful times, and will most likely disappear while sleeping. Also,
people with this particular type of CP may have problems coordinating muscle
movements that are needed for speech. This is called dysarthria.
The third type, Ataxic CP only affects 5-10% of people who have CP. This type
of CP is very rare, and affects balance and coordination. A person with Ataxic
CP may walk unsteady and have a wide step. They could place their feet far
apart, and may have difficulty with quick or exact movements, like buttoning a
shirt, or writing. Also, they could have "intention tremors." This type of
tremor will start with a voluntary movement, for example, reaching for
something, This may cause trembling in the body part that is being used. The
tremor will get worse as the person gets near that object.
The last type is mixed types. The most common type of mixed types is a mix of
Spastic CP and Athetoid CP. But, other combinations are very possible.