Interrelationships of Functional Status and Health Conditions in Children With Cerebral Palsy: A Descriptive Study

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Purpose:To examine the relationship among the Gross Motor Function Classification System (GMFCS), the Manual Ability Classification System (MACS), and the Communication Function Classification System (CFCS) in children with cerebral palsy (CP) and to determine the average number and effect of health conditions.Methods:Participants were 671 children with CP aged 2 to 12 years from Canada and the United States. Cross-tabulation of functional classifications and averages were computed for the number and impact of health conditions and comparisons among groups.Results:A total of 78 of the 125 possible classification combinations were recorded. Most frequent were GMFCS I, MACS I, CFCS I; GMFCS I, MACS II, CFCS I; and GMFCS II, MACS II, CFCS I. With lower levels of function, the average number and average impact of associated health conditions increased.Conclusions:The use of functional profiles across classification systems, with data on the associated health conditions, provides a more comprehensive picture of CP than any single classification or measure.

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