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Cerebral Palsy Statistics

Cerebral palsy (CP) is among the developmental disabilities tracked by the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network. The network is funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The ADDM Cerebral Palsy network reported for 2006 that:

  • For children living in Alabama, Georgia, Missouri, and Wisconsin (the four areas in the U.S. for which the network gathered statistics) cerebral palsy occurred in approximately 3.3 per 1,000 or one in every 303 eight-year-olds.
  • The prevalence of cerebral palsy varied by site. The range was 2.9 per 1,000 eight-year-olds in Wisconsin to 3.8 per 1,000 eight-year-olds in Georgia.
  • The overall prevalence of cerebral palsy was significantly lower among Hispanic children than among Black or White children.
  • On average, cerebral palsy occurred 1.2 times more often among boys than among girls.
  • The most common type of CP, found among approximately 80 percent of children with the disability, was spastic CP.
  • 56% of children with cerebral palsy could walk by themselves. Thirty-three percent had limited or no walking ability.

General Information and Statistics About Cerebral Palsy

  • CP is the most common motor disability during childhood.
  • Taken from population-based statistics worldwide, the prevalence of CP ranges from 1.5 to more than 4 per 1,000 live births.
  • In 2006, 56 percent of children with cerebral palsy could walk without help; 33 percent had limited or no ability to walk.
  • One study found that 41 percent of children with cerebral palsy had limited ability to crawl, walk, run, or play; 31 percent of the children studied needed to use special equipment such as walkers or wheelchairs.

Data tracked in Atlanta showed many children with CP also had other disabilities, including:

  • 59% who had other developmental disabilities
  • 43.8% had intellectual disability
  • 34.8% had epilepsy
  • 15.7% had impairment of vision
  • 9% had autism
  • 5.6% had hearing loss

Study in metropolitan Atlanta showed the following data correlating cerebral palsy with birth weight and length of gestation:

  • Among children weighing about 5.5 pounds or more, CP occurred in 1.1 for every 1,000 children

Cerebral Palsy Statistics in Europe and Australia

Australian and European cerebral palsy statistics showed that:

  • Among children weighing between 3 1/3 and 5 ½ pounds, CP occurred in 6.2 for every 1,000 live births.
  • Among children weighing less than 3 1/3 pounds, CP occurred in 59.5 per 1,000 live births.

European and Australian data on correlation between premature birth and CP found that the prevalence of CP:

  • Among children born at 32 to 36 weeks gestation was 4.9 to 8.0 per 1,000 live births.
  • Among children born at 28 to 31 weeks gestation was 35.0 to 79.5 per 1,000 live births.
  • Among children born at 37 or more gestation 1.1 to 1.7 per 1,000 live births.

For more information about cerebral palsy, contact us today.