acquired cerebral palsy — cerebral palsy that occurs as a result of injury to the brain after birth or during early childhood.

    Apgar score — a numbered scoring system doctors use to assess a baby's physical state at the time of birth.

    asphyxia — a lack of oxygen due to trouble with breathing or poor oxygen supply in the air.

    ataxia— the loss of muscle control.

    athetoid — making slow, sinuous, involuntary, writhing movements, especially with the hands.

    bilirubin — a bile pigment produced by the liver of the human body as a byproduct of digestion.

    bisphosphonates — a family of drugs that strengthen bones and reduce the risk of bone fracture in elderly adults.

    botulinum toxin — a drug commonly used to relax spastic muscles; it blocks the release of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter that energizes muscle tissue.

    cerebral — relating to the two hemispheres of the human brain.

    cerebral dysgenesis — defective brain development.

    choreoathetoid — a condition characterized by aimless muscle movements and involuntary motions.

    congenital cerebral palsy — cerebral palsy that is present at birth from causes that have occurred during fetal development.

    contracture — a condition in which muscles become fixed in a rigid, abnormal position, which causes distortion or deformity.

    developmental delay — behind schedule in reaching the milestones of early childhood development.

    dyskinetic — the impairment of the ability to perform voluntary movements, which results in awkward or incomplete movements.

    dystonia (dystonic) a condition of abnormal muscle tone.

    gait analysis — a technique that uses cameras, force plates, electromyography, and computer analysis to objectively measure an individual's pattern of walking.

    gestation — the period of fetal development from the time of conception until birth.

    hemiparesis — paralysis affecting only one side of the body.

    hypertonia — increased muscle tone.

    hypotonia — decreased muscle tone.

    hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy — brain damage caused by poor blood flow or insufficient oxygen supply to the brain.

    intracranial hemorrhage — bleeding in the brain.

    intrathecal baclofen — baclofen that is injected into the cerebrospinal fluid of the spinal cord to reduce spasticity.

    jaundice — a blood disorder caused by the abnormal buildup of bilirubin in the bloodstream.

    kyphosis — a humpback-like outward curvature of the upper spine.

    lordosis — an increased inward curvature of the lower spine.

    orthotic devices — special devices, such as splints or braces, used to treat posture problems involving the muscles, ligaments, or bones.

    osteopenia — reduced density and mass of the bones.

    palsy — paralysis, or the lack of control over voluntary movement.

    -paresis or -plegia — weakness or paralysis. In cerebral palsy, these terms are typically combined with other phrases that describe the distribution of paralysis and weakness; for example, quadriplegia means paralysis of all four limbs.

    periventricular leukomalacia (PVL) — ―peri" means near; "ventricular" refers to the ventricles or fluid spaces of the brain; and "leukomalacia" refers to softening of the white matter of the brain. PVL is a condition in which the cells that make up white matter die near the ventricles. Under a microscope, the tissue looks soft and sponge-like.

    placenta — an organ that joins a mother with her unborn baby and provides nourishment and sustenance.

    quadriplegia — paralysis of both the arms and legs.

    Rh incompatibility — a blood condition in which antibodies in a pregnant woman's blood attack fetal blood cells and impair an unborn baby’s supply of oxygen and nutrients.

    rubella — (also known as German measles) a viral infection that can damage the nervous system of an unborn baby if a mother contracts the disease during pregnancy.

    scoliosis — a disease of the spine in which the spinal column tilts or curves to one side of the body.

    selective dorsal rhizotomy — a surgical procedure in which selected nerves are severed to reduce spasticity in the legs.

    spastic (or spasticity) — describes stiff muscles and awkward movements.

    spastic diplegia (or diparesis) — a form of cerebral palsy in which spasticity affects both legs, but the arms are relatively or completely spared.

    spastic hemiplegia (or hemiparesis) — a form of cerebral palsy in which spasticity affects an arm and leg on one side of the body.

    spastic quadriplegia (or quadriparesis) — a form of cerebral palsy in which all four limbs are paralyzed or weakened equally.

    tremor — an involuntary trembling or quivering.