Behavioural and emotional symptoms of preschool children with cerebral palsy: a population-based study
Article first published online: 24 MAY 2010
© The Authors. Journal compilation © Mac Keith Press 2010
Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology
Volume 52, Issue 11, pages 1056–1061, November 2010
How to Cite
SIGURDARDOTTIR, S., INDREDAVIK, M. S., EIRIKSDOTTIR, A., EINARSDOTTIR, K., GUDMUNDSSON, H. S. and VIK, T. (2010), Behavioural and emotional symptoms of preschool children with cerebral palsy: a population-based study. Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology, 52: 1056–1061. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-8749.2010.03698.x
- Issue published online: 24 MAY 2010
- Article first published online: 24 MAY 2010
- Accepted for publication 29th March 2010. Published online 24th May 2010.
Aim To describe behavioural and emotional symptoms among Icelandic preschool children with cerebral palsy (CP).
Method Children with congenital CP, assessed with the Child Behavior Checklist/1½–5 (CBCL/1½–5) and Caregiver-Teacher Report Form (C-TRF), were enrolled in the study. A comparison group was recruited from the general population. Thirty-six children (53% males) with CP were assessed at a mean age of 4 years 11 months (SD 5mo, range 4–6y); 26 (72%) had bilateral distribution of symptoms and 32 (89%) had spastic CP. Thirty (83%) were at Gross Motor Function Classification System levels I or II and six at levels III or IV. For comparison, 110 (43% males) and 120 (48% males) children were assessed with the CBCL/1½–5 and the C-TRF respectively, at a mean age of 4 years 6 months (SD 6mo, range 4–6y).
Results Sixteen children (48%) with CP had high scores on total problems scale of the CBCL/1½–5 and 20 (65%) on the C-TRF compared with 18% of the comparison group, both on the CBCL/1½–5 and the C-TRF (p<0.001). Children with CP had higher scores on all subscales of the CBCL/1½–5 and the C-TRF, except somatic complaints. Attention difficulties, withdrawn, aggressive behaviour, and anxious/depressed symptoms were most pronounced among children with CP.
Interpretation A large proportion of preschool children with CP have substantial behavioural and emotional difficulties, which need to be addressed in their treatment.