Cerebral palsy generally is a long-lasting (chronic) condition, but it does not get worse. Some children are affected severely and have lifelong difficulties. Others may have mild symptoms of cerebral palsy as infants, but later develop more normal muscle tone and motor skills. Although these children may continue to have abnormal deep tendon reflexes, they may not experience significant movement problems in their daily lives.
In some cases, cerebral palsy symptoms change over time. For example, decreased muscle tone (hypotonia) in infancy can change into increased muscle tone (hypertonia) in later childhood.
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