Early Screening of Neuro-Motor deviations of High Risk Neonates
Purpose: Advances in neonatal care have made it imperative to assess early neuro-motor behaviour of high-risk babies. High risk factors may cause damage to the baby's central nervous system. Abnormalities may be manifested in the baby's posture, quality of movement and postural tone the first few weeks of life. With the help of diagnostic tools it is often possible to detect which area of the brain has suffered a structural or anatomical change. However this needs to be translated into the functional changes that are manifest. Once detected early intervention can be initiated.

Methodology: A case study of a high risk neonate was followed from twenty two days to nine months. The baby was initially screened and observations made on muscle tone, posture and general awareness. The screening procedure was based on Vojta, Amiel Tyson and Bobath. The findings of the screening indicated that the central nervous system was disturbed.

Intervention was initiated immediately. Every month the infant was re-screened and changes were noted. The findings at the end of nine months were recorded.

Results: At the age of nine months, the baby is not manifesting any abnormal tone or posture and the motor development is at par with the chronological age.

Discussion and Conclusions: The screening procedures give an indication that an infant may have neuro-motor problems, which may lead to a permanent disability. Early detection and intervention must be linked together. Intervention must encompass physical, cognitive and social-emotional development.
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