Abnormal Gait Patterns In Cerebral Palsy Children


The following is a list of abnormal gait patterns which may be seen in Cerebral Palsy children and which may need further evaluation:[1]

Antalgic gait (caused by pain)

  • Reduced time spent weight-bearing on the affected side.
  • A multitude of possible causes.
  • A smaller child may just present with unwillingness to weight-bear, so an index of suspicion is required.
  • May be observed in juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA), although children do not always complain of pain.


Circumduction gait

  • Excessive hip abduction as the leg swings forwards
  • Typically seen with a leg length discrepancy, with a stiff/restricted joint movement as in JIA, or with unilateral spasticity as in hemiplegic cerebral palsy.

Spastic gait

  • Stiff, foot-dragging with foot inversion. This is often seen in upper motor neurone neurological disease (eg, diplegic or quadriplegic cerebral palsy, stroke).
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