Spasticity and Movement Disorder Treatments

Children’s Hospital has had many firsts in the treatment of movement disorders, and the Movement Disorders and Spasticity Clinic is one of the few of its kind whose lead physicians have received neurodevelopmental disabilities (NDD) training and certifications. Our key areas of expertise are:

  • Intrathecal baclofen program: Children’s Hospital was the first site in the United States approved by the Food and Drug Administration to study intrathecal baclofen therapy — a procedure in which baclofen is distributed into spinal fluid by a hockey puck-sized pump that is surgically inserted into the patient’s abdomen. In some cases, baclofen also can be administered orally.
  • Cortical motor stimulation (CMS): During CMS, certain areas of the brain are stimulated electrically to improve function in children with certain movement disorders.
  • Deep brain stimulation (DBS): Children’s Hospital was the first site to use DBS in children with tremors related to cerebral palsy or head injury. Shown to significantly reduce tremors, DBS stimulates the brain through an electrode inserted deep into the patient’s thalamus and is controlled by both the patient and doctor.
  • BOTOX®: BOTOX injection therapy can temporarily aid in improving a variety of movement disorders, including spasticity, dystonia, and cerebral palsy.
  • Selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR): For children with spastic cerebral palsy, SDR can be an effective spasticity treatment. This treatment option has received more scientific scrutiny than any other procedure, including orthopaedic surgery. SDR can reduce spasticity by sectioning or cutting some of the sensory nerve fibers that connect the muscles to the spinal cord, thus reducing messages from the muscle and resulting in a better balance of nerve cell activity.