Reassessing CP Diagnosis to Involve Child Neurologists: Bhooma Aravamuthan, MD, DPhil

February 14, 2021
Bhooma Aravamuthan, MD, DPhil

The assistant professor of pediatric neurology at Washington University in St. Louis spoke to the results of a recent survey she and colleagues conducted.

“We all, as a whole, perhaps as neurologists, are very interested in diagnosis—what’s causing the problem, what is the diagnostic workup going to be? There was a heavy lean in the respondents toward our skills in diagnosing cerebral palsy.”

After developing a special interest group (SIG) to discuss the diagnosis of cerebral palsy (CP) at the 2019 Child Neurology Society annual meeting, Bhooma Aravamuthan, MD, DPhil, and colleagues conducted a survey of child neurologists and neurodevelopmentalists (CNs/NDDs) to find out more about the role that they can fill in the diagnosis of cerebral palsy (CP).

All told, the data showed that the majority of those surveyed felt that CNs/NDDs should always be involved in CP diagnosis, but 42% reported that their patients were typically not diagnosed by these stakeholders. Even more intriguing for Aravamuthan was that 18% did not receive referrals to establish the diagnosis of CP at all.

To discuss the findings of this survey into CP care further, NeurologyLive spoke with Aravamuthan. The assistant professor of pediatric neurology in the Department of Neurology at Washington University in St. Louis, detailed the results, what she found to be surprising about the data, and what they imply considering they conflict with the current guidelines for the diagnosis of CP.

REFERENCE
Aravamuthan BR, Shevell M, Kim YM, et al. Role of child neurologists and neurodevelopmentalists in the diagnosis of cerebral palsy. Neurology. 2020;95(21):962-972. doi: 10.1212/WNL.0000000000011036.