Cerebral Palsy Research Network Blog

Dr. Darcy Fehlings on Dystonia in Cerebral Palsy

Darcy Fehlings, MD, MsC
Dr. Darcy Fehlings describes the Care Pathway for dystonia in CP.

In last week’s webinar, Dr. Darcy Fehlings, a developmental pediatrician and expert in the treatment of dystonia, offers an in-depth overview of the American Academy for Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine’s Care Pathway for Dystonia in CP. Dr. Fehlings led the team that developed this clinical practice summary covering the diagnosis, care and treatment of dystonia in CP. She also discusses the Hypertonia Assessment Tool (HAT), a practical tool (that she developed), that allows clinicians to efficiently differentiate among spasticity, rigidity and dystonia. As more clinicians learn about the HAT and implement it into their practice, people living with CP and their providers will be in a better position to understand and properly address its symptoms. 

Living with dystonia in CP can be very painful, confusing to identify and difficult to treat. Dr. Darcy Fehlings acknowledges all of these points and presents the current information available to clinicians to best address the symptoms of individuals who have dystonia in CP.

This webinar can be viewed online and is the second in a three-part series called Research CP Dystonia Edition. It runs for approximately 75 minutes (including the Q and A).  More than 100 people have viewed the educational webinars about dystonia in CP since the program began on October 16th 2019. The webinar series lays the educational foundation for completing this initiative’s objective to create a patient-centered research agenda for dystonia in CP. Interested community members, clinicians, therapists and researchers are encouraged to sign up for Research CP Dystonia Edition on MyCP.org.  The process of establishing the research agenda begins in mid-November and is open only to people who have registered at MyCP.org. Or join us for this week’s webinar when Dr. Michael Kruer reviews current research and gaps in knowledge for dystonia in CP!