Forms of Hemiplegia

  • Giovanni Cioni
  • Giuseppina Sgandurra
  • Simonetta Muzzini
  • Paola B. Paolicelli
  • Adriano Ferrari


Traditionally, hemiplegia or hemiparesis, is defined as a central “unilateral” palsy that only affects one side of the body, almost always of “spastic” type (Aicardi and Bax 2009), while the word “hemidystonia” is more adequately used to define the dyskinesic form. With respect to cerebral palsy (CP), a distinction is made between a congenital form of hemiplegia, when the lesion occurs before the end of the neonatal period (within the first four weeks of life), and an acquired form, when the lesion provoking hemiplegia occurs later, within the first three years of life. According to the main case studies published (Hagberg and Hagberg, 2000), congenital forms amount to 70–90% of childhood hemiplegia, while acquired forms only amount to 10–30%. In a recent review conducted by the SCPE (Surveillance of Cerebral Palsy in Europe) working group, the prevalence of unilateral spastic hemiplegia accounted for about 0.6 per 1000 live births and it did not change significantly over time (Krägeloh-Mann, 2009). Hemiplegic forms are the most common expression of CP (more than 38% of cases) and the second in terms of frequency, after diplegia, in premature infants (around 20% of cases) (Hagberg et al. 1996; Himmelmann et al. 2005).


Cerebral Palsy Canadian Occupational Performance Measure Corticospinal Projection Median Cerebral Artery Perinatal Stroke 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giovanni Cioni
    • 1
    • 2
  • Giuseppina Sgandurra
    • 3
  • Simonetta Muzzini
    • 4
  • Paola B. Paolicelli
    • 1
  • Adriano Ferrari
    • 4
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Developmental NeuroscienceStella Maris Scientific InstitutePisa
  2. 2.Division of Child Neurology and PsychiatryUniversity of PisaPisa
  3. 3.Department of Developmental NeuroscienceStella Maris Scientific Institute S. Anna School of Advanced StudiesPisa
  4. 4.Child Rehabilitation UnitS. Maria Nuova HospitalReggio Emilia
  5. 5.Department of NeuroscienceUniversity of Modena and Reggio EmiliaReggio Emilia

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