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Cerebral Palsy in Adults: Symptoms and Care

Sandeep Dhanyamraju MD
Medically reviewed by Sandeep Dhanyamraju
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Sandeep Dhanyamraju MD
Medically reviewed by Sandeep Dhanyamraju

There are misconceptions about some diseases and conditions. CP is a neurological condition often associated with childhood. But its influence extends even to adult life. We will look at the lesser-known aspects of brain palsy in adults. We will help you shed light on symptoms that may persist or develop later in life. You will be able to understand the most critical aspects of care and support needed to improve the quality of life of people with this condition. Understanding and addressing cerebral palsy in adults is essential. Having the necessary information will help you understand the main symptoms of this disease and how to deal with them.

Let’s find out together what static encephalopathy is and how to treat it.

How Common is Cerebral Palsy in Adults?

Neuromotor disorder is often perceived as a disease that mainly affects children. However, it can persist into adulthood. But it happens with different degrees of severity and impact. Paralysis is common in adults, so we have to consider several factors:

  • Many people diagnosed with brain palsy in childhood continue to live with the disease. The prevalence of CP  among adults depends on how many children with the disease reach adulthood.
  • Some people may not receive a diagnosis of cerebral palsy, especially if their symptoms were mild or went unnoticed in childhood. This may contribute to the spread of static encephalopathy among adults.
  • The severity of neuromotor disorder can vary significantly from one person to another. However, some adults may experience minimal limitations in their daily lives. But others may face more severe problems.
  • Advances in medical care and interventions have led to increased life expectancy for people with CP. This means that more people are reaching adulthood with the disease.

In summary, cerebral palsy in adults is not uncommon, and various factors influence its prevalence.

a woman with cerebral palsy in a wheelchair

Cerebral Palsy Symptoms in Adults

Understanding the manifestations of CP in adulthood is critical to appropriate care. Knowing about the symptoms is crucial in dealing with them. Symptoms of this disease in adults are often pronounced. The condition severely limits a person and prevents him from living fully. That is why treatment is so necessary. It is essential to understand that the symptoms are not only manifested physically. The disease affects the nervous system and, therefore, has mental manifestations. Understanding the persistent physical cerebral palsy symptoms in adults, cognitive and emotional problems, and changing medical considerations associated with brain palsy in adulthood is essential to providing comprehensive care and improving people’s overall well-being.

This chapter examines three key aspects.

Physical Symptoms

CP is primarily known for its physical symptoms, which can persist into adulthood. These physical manifestations include:

  • Muscle spasticity. This can affect mobility, posture, and overall comfort. Treatment for spasticity often includes physical therapy, medication, or surgery.
  • Gait abnormalities. Difficulty walking is common in adults with cerebral palsy in adults. This may include an uneven gait, stepping on toes, or the need for assistive devices.
  • Joint contractures. Joint contractures may develop over time. This is when the joints become stiff and less flexible.
  • Chronic pain. Many adults with neuromotor disorder experience chronic pain. Effective pain management strategies are essential to improve their quality of life.

Cognitive and Emotional Symptoms

CP can also have cognitive and emotional consequences for adults. These problems can include:

  • Disruption in learning. Some people with brain palsy may have learning disabilities. Ongoing educational support or professional training may be required to address these issues.
  • Emotional well-being. Coping with a lifelong condition can take a toll on emotional health. Adults with cerebral palsy may experience depression, anxiety, or low self-esteem. Psychosocial support and counseling can be invaluable in addressing these issues.
  • Social interaction. Difficulties with communication and mobility can affect social interaction. Building and maintaining relationships may require adaptation and assistive technology. This can alleviate cerebral palsy symptoms in adults.

Evolving Medical Considerations

As people with static encephalopathy move into adulthood, their medical needs may change. Considerations include:

  • Transition planning. Transitioning from pediatric to adult health care can be a critical step. Careful planning ensures that people receive appropriate health care as they age.
  • Orthopedic operations. Some adults with brain palsy may need orthopedic surgery to address problems.
  • Pain management. Chronic pain management becomes increasingly important in adulthood. Healthcare providers need to create individualized pain management plans.
  • Aging concerns. Adults with neuromotor disorder may experience age-related health problems. Healthcare providers must monitor and address these issues.

Adults with Mild Cerebral Palsy

CP covers a spectrum of severity. Some people are classified as having mild brain palsy. But even a mild degree of the disease is a rather complex neurological condition. Nevertheless, with it, people show a higher degree of functional independence. They may need more help to perform everyday tasks. Although mobility problems may still be present, they tend to be less severe. Some people can walk on their own or with minimal assistance.

Many adults with mild cerebral palsy also attend college and have successful careers.

However, some people with mild static encephalopathy may have difficulty communicating. We explore different communication tools and strategies to improve their interactions with others.

The medical needs of adults with mild disease may be less intense. But regular medical control remains essential.

Adults with Severe Cerebral Palsy

Severe neuromotor disorder has unique challenges and considerations for adults. Life with a severe form of this disease can be pretty complicated. These adults often face significant mobility limitations. They may require assistive devices such as wheelchairs or communication devices. It is essential to increase their independence and quality of life.

Daily tasks and even personal hygiene can be difficult for such patients. Many people rely on AAC systems to communicate. Various AAC techniques and technologies help them express their thoughts and needs.

It is also essential to maintain mental health for such patients. People with severe CP often require ongoing medical care and intervention. Chronic pain can be a severe problem for them and is worth constantly fighting.

Family members and caregivers are essential in the lives of adults with severe cerebral palsy. Without such support, it is difficult for patients to live with their disease.

Some people with severe static encephalopathy may be in specialized facilities.

the doctor holds the patient's foot

Physiotherapy for Cerebral Palsy

Physiotherapy is a vital component of a multidisciplinary approach to CP. It plays a crucial role in helping people. This can improve their physical function, mobility, and overall quality of life. Here’s how physical therapy can help with neuromotor disorder:

  • Maximizing mobility. One of the main goals of physiotherapy for cerebral palsy is to maximize a person’s mobility. This includes improving or maintaining joint flexibility, muscle strength, and range of motion.
  • Promoting independence. Physiotherapy aims to help people with brain palsy become as independent as possible in everyday activities.
  • Analgesia. It can help manage pain and discomfort associated with muscle stiffness.
  • Enhancement function. Physiotherapy is aimed at improving a person’s functional abilities. This may involve learning activities such as transferring from a wheelchair to a bed or chair.

Physiotherapy has different treatment techniques:

  • Stretching. People use stretching exercises to improve muscle flexibility. 
  • Strengthening exercises. These exercises help build muscle strength, which can help with mobility and stability.
  • Gait training. This may include the use of assistive devices such as walkers or orthotics.
  • Balance and coordination training. Exercises to improve balance and coordination are often included in the therapy plan.
  • Water therapy. Some people with CP may benefit from water or hydrotherapy, where exercise is done in a warm pool. Water’s buoyancy can reduce joint stress and help relax tense muscles.
  • Auxiliary devices. Physiotherapists can recommend and assist people with brain palsy by using assistive devices.

Physiotherapy is a vital component of the comprehensive treatment and management of cerebral palsy.


In summary, adult neuromotor disorder has several symptoms and problems requiring specialized care and attention. People with cerebral palsy often face mobility and other challenges. Effective care for adults with static encephalopathy requires a multidisciplinary approach. It includes physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, medical treatment, and psychosocial support.

Early intervention and ongoing rehabilitation are critical to helping cerebral palsy in adults. Assistive technology can play a significant role in improving their communication and mobility. Additionally, a robust support system is essential.

Continued research and improvements in medical and therapeutic approaches promise to improve the quality of life of adults with this disease. It is also important to receive quality treatment and support on time. We will help you with this. Contact Lone Star Neurology!


What causes cerebral palsy in adults?

Cerebral palsy is caused by damage to the brain. It can also be the result of abnormalities that occurred during pregnancy, childbirth, or early childhood.


How do symptoms of cerebral palsy change with age?

Symptoms of cerebral palsy may become more pronounced or change in manifestations. But the condition itself is not progressive.


Is there a cure for cerebral palsy?

No, there is no cure for cerebral palsy. However, various therapies and treatments can help manage its symptoms.

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Edward Medina
Edward Medina
15:34 30 Jun 22
Just such an amazing staff that makes you feel like part of their family. I’ve been going there for over 5 years now... and each visit I get the very best care and treatments that I have ever received in the 20+ years that I’ve been dealing with severe debilitating migraines. Since i started seeing them the number of my migraines has dropped from 15-20 a month to 2-3 every 3 month. I highly recommend them …they will change your life!read more
Daneisha Johnson
Daneisha Johnson
22:20 19 May 22
Dr. Askari was very kind and explained everything so I could understand. The other staff were nice as well. I would... have gave 5 stars but I was a little taken aback when I checked in and had to pay 600.00 upfront. I think that should have been discussed in a appointment confirmation call or email just so I could have been more
Jean Cooper
Jean Cooper
16:54 29 Apr 22
I love the office staff they are friendly and very helpful. Dr. JODIE is very caring and understanding to your needs... and wants to help you. I will go back. would recommend Dr. Dr. Jodie to other Patients in a heart beat. The team works well more
Linda M
Linda M
19:40 02 Apr 22
I was obviously stressed, needing to see a neurologist. The staff was so patient and Dr. Ansari was so kind. At one... point he told me to relax, we have time, when I was relaying my history of my condition. That helped ease my stress. I have seen 3 other neurologists and he was the only one who performed any assessment tests on my cognitive and physical skills. At one point I couldn't complete two assessments and got upset and cried. I was told, it's OK. That's why you're here. I was truly impressed, and super pleased with the whole experience!read more
Leslie Durham
Leslie Durham
15:05 01 Apr 22
I've been coming here for about 5 years. The staff are ALWAYS friendly and knowledgeable. The Doctors are the absolute... best!! Jodie Moore is always in such a great mood which is a plus when you are already stressed. Highly recommendedread more
Monica Del Bosque
Monica Del Bosque
14:13 25 Mar 22
Since my first post my thoughts have changed here. It's unfortunate. My doctor and PA were great, but the office staff... is horrible. They never call you back when they say they will, they misinform you, they cause you too much stress wondering what's going on, they don't keep you posted. They never answer the phone. At this point I've left four messages in the last week, and I have sent three messages. Twice from their portal and one direct email. No response. My appointment is on Monday morning at 8:30am, no confirmation on my insurance and what's going on. What the heck is going on, this is ridiculous!I've given up... the stress her office staff has put me through is just not worth it. You can do so much better, please clean house, either change out your office staff, or find a way for them to be more efficient please. You have to do something. This is not how you want to run your practice. It leaves a very bad impression on your more
Ron Buckholz
Ron Buckholz
23:32 23 Mar 22
I was actually pleasantly surprised with this visit! It took me a long time to get the appointment scheduled because no... one answers your phones EVER! After a month, I finally got in, and your staff was warm, friendly, and I was totally impressed! I feel like you will take care of my needs!read more
Steve Nabavi
Steve Nabavi
16:28 16 Mar 22
It was a nice visit. Happy staff doing all they can do to comfort the patients in a very calming environment. You ask... me they are earned a big gold star on the fridge. My only complaint they didn't give me any more
Katie Lewis
Katie Lewis
16:10 10 Feb 22
Had very positive appointments with Jodie and Dr. Sheth for my migraine care. Jodie was so fast with the injections and... has so much valuable info. I started to feel light headed during checkout and the staff was SO helpful—giving me a chair, water, and taking me into a private room until I felt better. Highly recommend this practice for migraine patients, they know what they’re doing!!read more
Joshua Martinez
Joshua Martinez
16:02 10 Dec 21
I was scheduled to be checked and just want to say that the staff was fantastic. They were kind and helpful. I was... asked many questions related to what was going on and not once did I feel as though I was being brushed off. The front desk staff was especially great in assisting me. I'm scheduled to go back for a mri and am glad that I'll be going more
Isabel Ivy
Isabel Ivy
21:42 03 Nov 21
I had such a good experience with Lone Star Neurology, Brent my MRI Tech was so awesome and made sure I was very... comfortable during the appointment. He gave me ear plugs, a pillow, leg support and blanket, easiest MRI ever lol 🤣 My 72 hour EEG nurse Amanda was also so awesome. She made sure I was take care of over the 3 days and took her time with the electrodes to make sure it was comfortable for me! Paige was also a huge help in answering all my questions when it came to my test results, and letting me know her honest opinions about how I should go forth with my more
Leslie Luce
Leslie Luce
17:37 20 Oct 21
The professionalism and want to help attitude of this office was present from the moment I contacted them. The follow... up and follow through as well as their willingness to find a way to schedule my dad was above and beyond. We visited two offices in the same day with the same experience. I am appreciative of this—we spend a lot of time with doctors and this was top notch start to more
robert Parker
robert Parker
16:38 16 Apr 21
I love going to this office. The staff is friendly and helpful. The doctor is great. I am getting the best... neurological tests and treatment I have ever had. The only reason I did not give them a 5 star rating is because it is impossible to reach a live person at the office to reschedule appointments. Every time I have tried to get through to the office it says all people are busy and I am sent to a voicemail. If they could get their phone answering fixed, I would give them a strong 5 more
MaryAnn Hornbaker
MaryAnn Hornbaker
00:26 25 Feb 21
Dr. Harney is an excellent Dr. I found him friendly , personable and thorough. I evidently am an unusual case. ... Therefore he spent a Hugh amount of time educating me. He even gave me literature to further explain my condition and how to follow up. This is something you rarely get from your doctors. So I am more than please with my doctor and his more
Roger Arguello
Roger Arguello
03:05 29 Jan 21
Always courteous, professional. The staff is very friendly and always work with you to find the best appointment time.... The care team has been great. Always taking the time to listen to your concerns and to find the best more
Margaret Rowland
Margaret Rowland
01:12 27 Jan 21
I have been a patient at Lone Star Neurology for several years. Now both my adult daughters also are patients there. I... love Jodie. She is always so prompt whether it is a teleamed call are a visit in the office. She takes the time to explain everything to me and answers all my questions. I am so blessed to have Jodie as my more
Susan Miller
Susan Miller
03:01 13 Jan 21
My husband had an accident 5 years ago and Lone Star Neurology has been such a blessing to us with my husbands care.... Jodie Moore is his provider and she is amazing! Jodie is very knowledgeable, caring, and thorough. She takes her time with you, making sure your needs are met and she is happy to answer any questions you may have. Lone Star Neurology’s patients are very lucky to have Jodie providing their care. Thank you Lone Star Neurology and especially Jodie for everything you have done for us. Jodie, you are the best!read more
Windalyn C
Windalyn C
01:32 09 Jan 21
Jodie is wonderful. She is very caring and knowledgeable. I have been to over a dozen neurologists, and none were able... to help me as much as they have here. Thanks!read more
Katie Kordel
Katie Kordel
00:40 09 Jan 21
Jodi Moore, nurse practitioner, is amazing. I have suffered from frequent, debilitating headaches for almost 20 years.... She has provided the best proactive and responsive care I have ever received. My quality of life has been greatly improved by her caring approach and tenacity in finding more
Ellie Natsis
Ellie Natsis
15:41 07 Jan 21
I have had the best experience at this neurologist's office! For over a year I have been receiving iv treatments here... each month and my nurse, Bobbie is beyond wonderful!! She's so attentive, knowledgeable, caring, and detail oriented. She makes an otherwise uncomfortable experience much more pleasant and definitely puts me at ease! She also helps me with my insurance,ordering this specialty medication and dealing with the ordering process which is no easy feat.Needless to say, she goes above a beyond in every way and I'm so grateful to this office and to Bobbie for all they do for me!read more
Matt Morris
Matt Morris
15:39 07 Jan 21
Let me start by saying that I have been coming here for years. Due to my autoimmune disease, I am in this office... once every three weeks for multiple hours at a time. The office is very clean and the staff very friendly. My only complaint would be there communication via phone. They aren't the best at responding if you leave a voicemail and expect a call back. I understand that this is prob just due to the sheer number of alls they receive daily. What I can say I like the best about the office are the people. Bobby who handles my infusions is great. I never have any issues with her setting up my infusions. She is very quick to reply to messages sent via text and if she were to leave then my whole opinion of the office may change. I also enjoy people like Matt, Lauren, and Jodi. I appreciate all that they do for me and without this team I'm not sure I would be as happy as I am to visit the office as frequently as I have to. Please ensure that these folks are recognized as they are what makes my visit to this office so tolerable :).read more
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