Rehabilitation after multilevel surgery in ambulant spastic children with cerebral palsy: children and parent experiences

Dev Neurorehabil. 2010;13(3):182-91. doi: 10.3109/17518421003606151.


Purpose: This study explores post-operative family situation, rehabilitation and interdisciplinary cooperation for ambulant children with cerebral palsy (CP), after multilevel surgery.

Methods: Eight ambulant spastic children with varied severity of CP and their parents were included. Qualitative, semi-structured interviews were carried out separately with children and parents.

Results: Children experiencing a low degree of post-operative pain were satisfied due to improved strength and ambulation, leading to increased social participation. A few experienced severe pain and modest physical improvement. Most families experienced a lack of information and communication between rehabilitation levels. Rehabilitation was considered strenuous because of complex and intense training programmes. Schools were mostly responsive to children's extra post-operative needs, but some examples of serious neglect and bullying occurred.

Conclusion: Results imply the need for systematic securing of interdisciplinary knowledge transfer regionally and locally by the university hospital, aiming at empowering families and health professionals involved in this complex rehabilitation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Cerebral Palsy / rehabilitation*
  • Cerebral Palsy / surgery*
  • Child
  • Family
  • Female
  • Health Status
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Male
  • Orthotic Devices
  • Pain, Postoperative
  • Patient Satisfaction*
  • Physical Therapy Modalities
  • Professional-Patient Relations
  • Quality of Life*
  • Social Support*
  • Stress, Psychological
  • Surveys and Questionnaires