Background: There is an abundance of research investigating physical health outcomes in people with cerebral palsy, however evidence from studies investigating psychiatric disorders in this group is less well developed . Specifically, there is little research synthesising the prevalence rates of psychiatric disorders in people with cerebral palsy, and there is no summary of the instruments used to measure this . This systematic review will summarise the current body of evidence investigating psychiatric disorders in people with cerebral palsy, as well as the measurement or diagnostic instruments used to measure psychiatric disorder . Findings: To be included in the review, articles must report on psychiatric disorders in people with cerebral palsy or use standardised tools that allow for clinical thresholds to be derived, written in English, and published after 1980 . A comprehensive, electronic database search strategy will be implemented targeting relevant papers indexed in MEDLINE, PsycINFO, Cochrane Library, and PubMed . Searches will include terms that relate to psychiatric disorders (E.g., mood disorders, anxiety disorders, ADHD, autism) in people with cerebral palsy . Data will be extracted based on age, psychiatric disorder, and cerebral palsy severity . We will summarise the findings as a narrative and will provide overall prevalence estimates for psychiatric disorders .
Discussion: The systematic review will provide novel insights into the prevalence of psychiatric disorders in people with cerebral palsy. It will also provide recommendations about the types of instruments that have been used and implemented in health research related to cerebral palsy . It will guide future work on interventions and primary research in clinical sciences and allied health disciplines.