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Noninvasive diagnostic methods for perceptual and motor disabilities in children with cerebral palsy

Author(s): Renee Lampe

Journal: Orthopedic Reviews
ISSN 2035-8237

Volume: 1;
Issue: 2;
Start page: e20;
Date: 2009;
Original page

Keywords: Bodyscan | Cerebral palsy | Pedographic measurements | fMRI | Eyetracking

The field of neuroorthopedics centers on chronic diseases demanding close clinical monitoring. We shall use several examples to show how the various noninvasive diagnostic instruments can be used to obtain insight into the central nervous system as well as into the musculoskeletal system and its morphology. The choice of the most appropriate method depends on the problem; that is, whether the method is to be applied for clinical use or for basic research. In this report we introduce various technical examination methods that are being used successfully in the fields of pediatrics, orthopedics, and neurology. The major examination instrument in pediatric diagnostics is sonography, which is being used in this report as a research instrument for the biomechanics of the musculoskeletal system, but which also gives insight into neurofunctional sequences. In orthopedics, pedography is used for diagnosing deformities of the feet. In neuroorthopedics for children pedography acts as a functional monitor for apraxia and thus allows, for example, a classification of the degree of neurological malfunctions in the lower extremities. The 3D bodyscan is used to minimize x-raying in patients with neurogenic scoliosis. This report introduces examples of the application of MRI and fMRI for basic research. The biometric measuring methods introduced provide precise data in the areas of diagnostics and monitoring and are highly valuable for further neuroorthopedic basic research. In future we expect the ever-evolving technical measuring methods to enable a deeper understanding of the primary neurological causes of and the implications for patients with cerebral palsy and other neuroorthopedic conditions. This may allow the development of new forms of therapy not necessarily predictable today.

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