Prior to your first visit, the team will thoroughly review your child’s medical records and imaging studies and will begin to plan for possible treatment options. During your first visit, our specialists will evaluate your child together, all at the same time. They might do activities to help your child relax as they observe his or her muscle tone, reflexes and strength, range of motion, gait pattern and coordination / control of active movements. They will talk with you about previous medications and therapies you’ve tried, explain the different surgical options and recommend a treatment plan that they think will help the most.

Cerebral Palsy Program at Cincinnati Children's.Before you leave, the entire team will sit down and talk with you about next steps for managing your child’s spasticity. You will leave this appointment with a specific, personalized plan. This plan could include one or more of the following:

  • A recommendation of selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR)
  • A recommendation of surgery to implant a baclofen pump
  • Additional tests to help determine whether surgery is a good option for your child
  • A gait analysis in our Motion Analysis Lab to further evaluate how your child’s spasticity, weakness and/or joint tightness may impact their gait pattern
  • Nonsurgical therapies. This may include oral or injectable medications, physical therapy exercises and leg bracing to help improve muscle tone and function so that surgery is not necessary. Or, the team may recommend specific therapies to help your child respond better to surgery at a later time.