This book is a sequel to our 1984 volume on The Epidemiology of the Cerebral Palsies, and is written in response to new developments in cerebral palsy research, including data and analytical methods that challenge long-standing ideas about the aetiology of the disorder. Features include:
- a complete review of published data on the trends in the cerebral palsies
- new ways of thinking about causal pathways in the cerebral palsies, which suggest possible new means of prevention
- a systematic review of management in the cerebral palsies.
Dramatic changes in the occurrence and clinical characteristics of the cerebral palsies, particularly among the new cohorts of very preterm survivors, have coincided with a variety of innovations in obstetric and neonatal care. More information about the impact of perinatal care on these conditions is essential, as randomized trials of new therapies often stop too soon to assess their longer term effects on brain development.
Increasing litigation in cerebral palsy cases has stimulated further research into the association between birth asphyxia and brain damage, and this is but one example of the usefulness of causal pathways analysis, a new way of examining aetiology in epidemiology.
This book draws heavily on excellent data from the Western Australian Cerebral Palsy Register, a major source of such important developments in cerebral palsy research.
It is not only a timely update on the epidemiology of these important conditions, but also a book to help guide good epidemiological research in this and related conditions.