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Health Information For Parents
Hemiplegia (hem-uh-PLEE-jee-uh) is paralysis that affects the motor function of one side of the body.
Hemiplegia is caused by damage to some part of the brain that disrupts the connection between the brain and the muscles on the affected side. Damage to the right side of the brain affects the left side of the body, and damage to the left side of the brain affects the right side of the body.
Hemiplegia can be congenital (meaning the brain is damaged before, during, or shortly after birth) or it can be the result of an injury or illness that damages the brain. Hemiplegia can cause stiffness, weakness, and a lack of control in the affected side of the body. It can be associated with a seizure disorder, vision problems, and speech difficulties.
Hemiplegia is a common side effect of strokes. In children, it is often associated with cerebral palsy. Treatment for hemiplegia focuses on controlling symptoms and retraining the body to recover as much ability as possible through rehabilitation therapy.
There is no cure for hemiplegia, but it doesn’t get worse over time, and undamaged parts of the brain often can take over many of the functions of the damaged parts. Treatment and therapy (physical, speech, or occupational) can help minimize the effects of hemiplegia and help the affected side develop as fully as possible.
All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.
You might hear a seizure called a convulsion, fit, or spell.
Do you know what your occupation is?
This “brain attack” happens when blood flow to the brain stops, even for a second. Often, kids who have a stroke can learn to use their arms and legs and speak again through brain retraining.
You might visit a speech therapist if you’re having trouble speaking or understanding others. Find out more in this article for kids.
Physical therapy helps people get back to full strength and movement – and manage pain – in key parts of the body after an illness or injury.
Physical therapy uses exercises and other special treatments to help people move their bodies. Find out more in this article for kids.
Working with a certified speech-language pathologist can help a child with speech or language difficulties.
Seizures are caused by a sudden surge of electrical activity in the brain. Find out what you need to know about seizures and what to do if your child has one.
Cerebral palsy is one of the most common developmental disabilities in the United States. It affects a person’s ability to move and coordinate body movements.
Cerebral palsy (CP) affects a child’s muscle tone, movement, and more. This article explains causes, diagnosis, treatment, and coping.
Occupational therapy can help improve kids’ cognitive, physical, and motor skills and build their self-esteem and sense of accomplishment.
Doctors often recommend physical therapy for kids who have been injured or have movement problems from an illness, disease, or disability. Learn more about PT.
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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