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Forum Name: Pediatric Topics

Question: gross motor skills / ataxia / celiac


 floridamom - Sun Aug 19, 2007 8:51 am

My daughter, age 7, has terrible problems with coordination. She still cannot ride a bike, even with training wheels, and even after hours of instruction. Her walk varies, but she often walks very much like Captain Jack Sparrow from the Pirates of the Carribean movies - drunken stumbling, weaving, and bumping on walls, doorframes, and furniture like a pinball.

She meets the clinical criteria for hyperactivity, but doesn't seem to be hampered in school, so is receiving no tx. She also has celiac disease, and has been on a gluten free diet for over a year. Her growth in on track- 50th percentile weight, 25th percentile height- and she is otherwise a happy, healthy and (extremely) energetic girl.

It is difficult to count the many times she falls in a day. A recent attempt at riding a scooter was almost comical, except for the number of injuries involved, and I am growing increasingly concerned about ataxia. I am wondering 1) if her lack of coordination still falls withing the normal range, and 2) if any of this could be related to her CD.
 Dr. Chan Lowe - Fri Sep 07, 2007 3:10 pm

User avatar Hi Floridamom,

I do not think this is related to her celiac disease directly, although there are a few studies indicating that those with gluten sensitivities may also be more prone to ataxia (without a causal relationship).

There are other causes of ataxia as well. From what you are describing to me I do not think this is within "normal" dyscoordination problems.

I would recommend she see her doctor for a formal evaluation. She may need to see a neurologist as well.

Best wishes.

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