Children who suffer from cerebral palsy are more likely to be diagnosed with heart disease when they reach adulthood.
According to the results of a new study that was published recently in the journal Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology, a diagnosis of cerebral palsy in infancy could mean a heightened risk of cardiovascular disease in adulthood. According to the researchers, cerebral palsy limits an individual’s movement and mobility. This reduced physical activity and sedentary lifestyle as a result of the condition starts during childhood and continues as the child becomes a teenager and, later, as an adult.
Lack of physical activity is strongly associated with cardiovascular disease, and it is not surprising, therefore, that patients with cerebral palsy find themselves at a higher risk of this condition in adulthood. Besides, certain physiological characteristics that are specific to cerebral palsy patients and others with similar conditions are also associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease compared to the general population.
The researchers, however, believe that there are ways to circumvent the effects of reduced physical activity on the patient by focusing on other variables in the person’s health that could also affect his risk for disease, including his stress levels and his sleep patterns. Obesity can be a direct trigger for cardiovascular disease, and efforts must be made by doctors treating the cerebral palsy patient to modify lifestyle patterns wherever possible in order to prevent obesity, thereby reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
As more and more cerebral palsy patients begin to lead productive and enhanced lives, research into the condition has fortunately begun to focus on the long term health challenges that these individuals face, and not just the immediate effects of their condition. Cerebral palsy often occurs as a result of a birth injury, like oxygen deprivation during or before birth. Children who have been diagnosed with cerebral palsy may require special therapies, assistive aids, and specialized medical services that will be necessary not just during infancy and childhood, but even later in life.
If your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy that you believe occurred as a result of medical negligence, speak to an Indianapolis birth injury lawyer at Montross Miller and discuss whether your child is eligible for compensation for his injuries. Initial consultations are free – we don’t charge a fee unless we win compensation for you.