Hemiplegia is a term used to describe paralysis, severe weakness, or rigid movement on either the right or left side of the body. Hemiplegia  can also be associated with limited use of the hand, balance issues, speech issues, and visual field problems.

Cause of Hemiplegia

The main cause of hemiplegia is brain damage as the result of disrupted blood flow. This can occur at birth, or may occur after birth as a result of stroke, cerebral palsy, perinatal strokes in infants, and traumatic brain injury. If the person experiences injury on the right side of the brain, then the left side of the body will be affected. If the person experiences injury on the left side of the brain, then the right side of the brain will be affected.

Types of Hemiplegia

There are several different types of hemiplegia. They include:

  • Facial hemiplegia— Paralysis occurs on one side of the face
  • Cerebral hemiplegia— A brain lesion disrupts the flow of blood to the brain
  • Spastic hemiplegia — Characterized by paralysis and spastic movements on the affected side
  • Spinal hemiplegia— Caused by lesions that have formed on the spine