||OBJECTIVES: To observe the effects of transcutaneous electrical acupoint stimulation (TEAS) in improving motor functions and self-care abilities in children with cerebral palsy in their early childhood. DESIGN: A preliminary, prospective, cohort study. SETTINGS/LOCATION: Multicenter. SUBJECTS: Children aged 2-6 years old. INTERVENTIONS: Twenty-three children were included in the study and randomly assigned to a control group ([CG] N = 11) or a therapeutic group ([TG] N = 12). In the TG, children were treated with TEAS (Shousanli [LI10] and Waiguan [SJ5]) plus the exercise therapy, while in the control group, they were treated with sham TEAS plus exercise therapy. Therapies were performed five days per week for eight weeks. OUTCOME MEASURES: The Gross Motor Function Measure (GMFM) and the Functional Independent Measurement for children (WeeFIM) were used to evaluate motor functions and self-care abilities before and after the therapies. RESULTS: Greater improvements were observed in the TG concerning all the measurements, although without statistical differences. The increments of the GMFM score and the WeeFIM motor, self-care and total scores were 36.08 +/- 18.34 (26%), 16.17 +/- 8.21 (33%), 7.67 +/- 3.42 (40%) and 20.33 +/- 10.08 (28%) in the TG, while 22.73 +/- 16.54 (17%), 9.09 +/- 9.43 (19%), 5.64 +/- 6.73 (29%) and 12.82 +/- 11.77 (18%) in the CG, respectively. No statistically significant correlations were shown between functional improvements and the demographics in the TG or the CG. The GMFM improvement was not statistically correlated with the improvements of the WeeFIM motor, self-care or total scores. However, the WeeFIM motor, self-care and total score were significantly positively correlated with one another in both groups (P < 0.01). No adverse effect was recorded during the study. CONCLUSION: TEAS may be effective in improving motor functions and self-care abilities in children with cerebral palsy, in addition to conventional exercise therapy. Larger samples are required to confirm the efficacies.