Common concerns parents and physicians may first notice – A baby not sitting at seven months, abnormal muscle tone, and poorly coordinated movements. If a baby is mildly delayed, a diagnosis may take longer.
A diagnosis can be obtained by a neurologist. A CAT scan or MRI may be given. Sometimes these tests can show the part of the brain affected and an early diagnosis can be obtained. The earlier the diagnosis, the earlier intervention can begin.
A majority of parents will not get a diagnosis of cerebral palsy until the child is several months or years old. Usually a parent will notice that a child is not developing as the same pace as their peers but will not have an explanation as to why.
It is very important to note that cerebral palsy itself is not progressive, life-threatening, hereditary, or contagious. However, a child may have more than one diagnosis that can contribute to other issues.