Prevalence and functioning of children with cerebral palsy in four areas of the United States in 2006: a report from the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network

Res Dev Disabil. Mar-Apr 2011;32(2):462-9. doi: 10.1016/j.ridd.2010.12.042. Epub 2011 Jan 26.

Abstract

Aim: To estimate the prevalence of cerebral palsy (CP) and the frequency of co-occurring developmental disabilities (DDs), gross motor function (GMF), and walking ability using the largest surveillance DD database in the US.

Methods: We conducted population-based surveillance of 8-year-old children in 2006 (N=142,338), in areas of Alabama, Georgia, Wisconsin, and Missouri. This multi-site collaboration involved retrospective record review at multiple sources. We reported CP subtype, co-occurring DDs, Gross Motor Function Classification System (GMFCS) level, and walking ability as well as CP period prevalence by race/ethnicity and sex.

Results: CP prevalence was 3.3 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 3.1-3.7) per 1000 and varied by site, ranging from 2.9 (Wisconsin) to 3.8 (Georgia) per 1000, 8-year olds (p<0.02). Approximately 81% had spastic CP. Among children with CP, 8% had an autism spectrum disorder and 35% had epilepsy. Using the GMFCS, 38.1% functioned at the highest level (I), with 17.1% at the lowest level (V). Fifty-six percent were able to walk independently and 33% had limited or no walking ability.

Interpretation: Surveillance data are enhanced when factors such as functioning and co-occurring conditions known to affect clinical service needs, quality of life, and health care are also considered.

MeSH terms

  • Cerebral Palsy / epidemiology*
  • Cerebral Palsy / physiopathology*
  • Child
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / epidemiology
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / physiopathology
  • Databases, Factual
  • Epilepsy / epidemiology
  • Epilepsy / physiopathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Motor Activity*
  • Population Surveillance
  • Prevalence
  • Retrospective Studies
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Walking