Most children with Cerebral Palsy between the ages of 8 and 12 rate their quality of life no lower than do typical 8 to 12-year-olds, according to a study recently published in the medical journal The Lancet. The study, conducted in the U.K., involved 500 randomly-selected children between 8 and 12 years of age who had been diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy (CP) and were capable of self-reporting their quality of life. Researchers found that neither a diagnosis of CP nor the type or severity of their impairments affected their scores relating to psychological well-being, self-perception, social support, school environment, perception of financial resources or social acceptance, when compared to the general population of similar-age children.
The study did acknowledge that children with CP who had difficulty walking reported a lower physical well-being than most children, that those with intellectual impairment reported lower moods and emotions and less autonomy, and those with speech difficulties reported worse relationships with their parents. Further, the presence of pain reduced children’s score on quality of life in every category.
The survey authors hope that the research will influence social and educational policy and lead to the greater social inclusion of children with Cerebral Palsy.
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