A parent may be concerned about developmental delays or a doctor may observe a sign outside of growth norms. There is no definitive test for Cerebral Palsy, causing doctors to diagnose over time. For parents that suspect a child may have Cerebral Palsy, the long wait between that initial suspicion and an official diagnosis can be an emotional one. But, what is often a time of anxiety evolves into an empowering experience that leads to acceptance and unconditional love.
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- Review the Cerebral Palsy Risk Factor Checklist and discuss items of concern with your child’s doctor.
- Review the signs and symptoms of Cerebral Palsy, make a list of items you have observed about your child that may indicate Cerebral Palsy or development delay, and discuss with your child’s primary care physician.
- Review the steps for diagnosing Cerebral Palsy so you can become aware of the process, the tests and evaluations and the timeframe required to properly diagnose – or rule out – Cerebral Palsy.
- If your child is developmentally delayed, ask your doctor about treatment and therapy options for your child’s symptoms, even while they are in the middle of the process.
- Ask your doctor if he or she is aware of the AAP guidelines for diagnosing Cerebral Palsy. If not, print a copy and share with the doctor.
- Call your local early intervention specialists and discuss whether your child is eligible for enrollment.
- Review your health insurance options.
- Review your child’s doctor’s experience and credentials in diagnosing Cerebral Palsy.
- Seek a second opinion, if needed.