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Mortality from 1 to 16–18 years in bilateral cerebral palsy
  1. Gillian Baird1,
  2. Elizabeth Allen2,
  3. David Scrutton1,3,
  4. Adrienne Knight4,
  5. Anne McNee1,
  6. Elspeth Will1,
  7. Diana Elbourne2
  1. 1Newcomen Centre, Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Trust, London, UK
  2. 2Medical Statistics Unit, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London, UK
  3. 3Neurosciences Unit, Institute of Child Health, University College, London, UK
  4. 4Department of Paediatrics, King's College London, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Professor G Baird, Newcomen Child Development Centre, Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Trust, London SE1 9RT, UK; gillian.baird{at}


Objective To ascertain mortality from 1 to 18 years, and predictors of mortality.

Design Long-term follow-up of population cohort born 1989–1992.

Setting Births in South East Thames Region.

Patients 346 children with bilateral cerebral palsy (CP).

Interventions Not applicable.

Main outcome measures Mortality; predictors of mortality.

Results 98% of the cohort were traced. 61/340 (17.9%) had died by age 16–18 years at a steady mortality. The main predictive factor was severity of impairment of functional ability (hazard ratio 5.7, 95% CI 2.1 to 15.0 for poor hand manipulation; 6.8 (1.9 to 23.9).for severe communication problems).

Conclusions Although there were deaths throughout the childhood and teenage years, the majority of children with bilateral CP are likely to survive to adulthood, especially if they do not have major functional impairment at 2 years. This confirms findings of other studies of children with CP.

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  • Funding The study was funded by the Charles Wolfson Charitable Trust, Cerebra, One Small Step and the Hickman Fund (both these last administered by Ruth Bishop, Special Purpose Funds Manager, Guy's and St Thomas' Charity).

  • Competing interests None.

  • Ethics approval Ethical approval was granted by the South-East MREC, reference number 06/MRE01/18.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.