Login

Constipation

Constipation related to a variety of causes is often a problem in children and adults with cerebral palsy. Decreased mobility may lead to diminished appetite which can result in inadequate roughage in the diet. Additionally, oral-motor dysfunction may restrict the amount and types of food consumed. Gastrointestinal transit time is increased substantially in individuals with cerebral palsy- resulting potentially in stasis of stool, bloating, and impaction. Constipation itself causes decreased appetite thereby inducing a 'vicious cycle.' Chronic constipation may thus lead to delayed growth and/or general malnutrition in affected individuals. Daily bowel movements significantly increase appetite in affected children. Once constipation has been alleviated it is preferable to use natural measures, such as increased fiber and fluid intake, to maintain the daily bowel regimen.