Assessment of specific characteristics of abnormal general movements: does it enhance the prediction of cerebral palsy?

Elisa G. Hamer, Arend F. Bos, Mijna Hadders-Algra*

*Bijbehorende auteur voor dit werk

OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review

44 Citaten (Scopus)


AIM Abnormal general movements at around 3 months corrected age indicate a high risk of cerebral palsy (CP). We aimed to determine whether specific movement characteristics can improve the predictive power of definitely abnormal general movements.

METHOD Video recordings of 46 infants with definitely abnormal general movements at 9 to 13 weeks corrected age (20 males; 26 females; median gestational age 30 wks; median birthweight 1200g) were analysed for the following characteristics: presence of fidgety, cramped synchronized, stiff, or jerky movements and asymmetrical tonic neck reflex pattern. Neurological condition (presence or absence of CP), gross motor development (Alberta Infant Motor Scales), quality of motor behaviour (Infant Motor Profile), functional mobility (Pediatric Evaluation of Disability Inventory), and Mental Developmental Index (Bayley Scales) were assessed at 18 months corrected age. Infants were excluded from participating in the study if they had severe congenital anomalies or if their caregivers had an insufficient knowledge of the Dutch language.

RESULTS Of the 46 assessed infants, 10 developed spastic CP (Gross Motor Function Classification System levels I to V; eight bilateral spastic CP, two unilateral spastic CP). The absence of fidgety movements and the presence of predominantly stiff movements were associated with CP (Fisher's exact test, p=0.018 and p=0.007 respectively) and lower Infant Motor Profile scores (Mann-Whitney U test, p=0.015 and p=0.022 respectively); stiff and predominantly stiff movements were associated with lower Alberta Infant Motor Scales scores (Mann-Whitney U test, p=0.01 and p=0.004 respectively). Cramped synchronized movements and the asymmetrical tonic neck reflex pattern were not related to outcome. None of the movement characteristics were associated with Pediatric Evaluation of Disability Inventory scores or the Mental Developmental Index.

INTERPRETATION The assessment of fidgety movements and movement stiffness may improve the predictive power of definitely abnormal general movements for developmental outcome. However, the presence of fidgety movements does not preclude the development of CP.

Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)751-756
Aantal pagina's6
TijdschriftDevelopmental Medicine and Child Neurology
Nummer van het tijdschrift8
StatusPublished - aug-2011

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