Single blind randomised controlled trial of GAME (Goals - Activity - Motor Enrichment) in infants at high risk of cerebral palsy

Catherine Morgan, Iona Novak, Russell C. Dale, Andrea Guzzetta, Nadia Badawi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Cerebral palsy (CP) is caused by a lesion in the developing infant brain. Recent neuroplasticity literature suggests that intensive, task-specific intervention ought to commence early, during the critical period of neural development. Aims: To determine whether "GAME" (Goals - Activity - Motor Enrichment), a motor learning, environmental enrichment intervention, is effective for improving motor skills in infants at high risk of CP. Methods and procedures: Single blind randomised controlled trial of GAME versus standard care. Primary outcome was motor skills on the Peabody Developmental Motor Scales-2 (PDMS-2). Secondary outcomes included Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM), Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development (BSID-III) and Gross Motor Function Measure-66 (GMFM-66). Outcome assessors were masked to group allocation and data analyzed with multiple regression. Outcomes and results: All n = 30 infants enrolled received the assigned intervention until 16 weeks post enrolment. At 12 months of age, n = 26 completed assessments. Significant between group differences were found in raw scores on the PDMS-2 in favour of GAME (B = 20.71, 95%CI 1.66-39.76, p = 0. 03) and at 12 months on the total motor quotient (B = 8.29, 95%CI 0.13-16.45,p = 0.05). Significant between group differences favored GAME participants at 12 months on the cognitive scale of the BSID-III and satisfaction scores on the COPM. Conclusion: GAME intervention resulted in advanced motor and cognitive outcomes when compared with standard care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)256-267
Number of pages12
JournalResearch in Developmental Disabilities
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1 2016


  • Cerebral palsy
  • Early intervention
  • Environmental enrichment
  • Motor learning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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