Treatments for Spasticity

Nonsurgical Treatment

  • Botox injections
  • Occupational therapy
  • Physical therapy is an important part of therapy for a child with cerebral palsy. The therapist can increase the range of motion of joints by aggressive stretching of tight muscles to reduce contractures. Therapists also teach reduction of reflex spasticity by a continuing rehabilitation program involving the home caregiver, usually the parents.
  • Serial casting

Surgical Treatment - Orthopedic and Neurosurgical

  • Orthopedic Surgery has no influence on spasticity itself. It is directed at correcting secondary problems that result from spasticity such as muscle contractures and bone deformities. It is most effective when used in combination with treatments aimed at reducing spasticity. It can restore contracted muscles to their appropriate length and realign the bony skeleton so that the muscles can work better. However, without treating the underlying spasticity, the muscles will become contracted again and the bony deformities will reoccur over time. Further, each tendon-lengthening procedure results in a decrease in muscle strength.
  • Neurosurgery - The most satisfying and successful operation to address spasticity is selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR).
  • Baclofen pumps