Mobility aids and transport possibilities 10-45 years after spinal cord injury

date: 2004 Dec;42(12):699-706
author: Biering-Sorensen F.
publication: Spinal Cord.
PubMed ID15289807

Abstract

STUDY DESIGN:

A cross-sectional survey with retrospective data.

OBJECTIVE:

Follow-up information on the use of mobility aids and transportation possibilities in a chronic traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) population.

SETTING:

Clinic for Para- and Tetraplegia at Rigshospitalet, University hospital, Denmark (CPT). The uptake area is East Denmark with a population of 2.5 million inhabitants.

METHODS:

Survey on date of birth, gender, time of SCI, cause of SCI, neurological level and functional classification from medical files were combined with information concerning mobility aids and transport possibilities at the time of follow-up from a mailed questionnaire.

MATERIAL:

Individuals with traumatic SCI before 1 January 1991 were still in regular follow-up at CPT, and with sufficient medical record. A total of 279 were included, out of which 236 answered the questionnaire. Of the 193 men and 43 women injured from 1956 to 1990 the response rate was 84.6%. Age at the time of follow-up was 50.5 years in mean, and follow-up time was 24.1 years in mean. In all, 126 were paraplegic and 110 tetraplegic. Responders and nonresponders were comparable.

RESULTS:

In all, 3.4% used no special mobility aids at all. In total, 49 used crutches or rolling walkers and 26 lower extremities bracing, but mostly in combination with a wheelchair. Standing frame and stand-up wheelchair were used by men only. Manual wheelchair was used by 83.5% and electrical wheelchair by 27%, and the latter more by the tetraplegics. In all, 9.3% had neither a manual nor an electrical wheelchair. Overall, 86.4% had a passenger van or another car. Women used a car less often. Passenger vans were more often used by tetraplegics.

CONCLUSION:

Nearly all SCI participants had mobility aids of some sort, and 90.7% had either a manual or an electrical wheelchair or both. Most had a passenger van or another type of car for transportation. These facilities are important for the individuals to obtain an independent living.

Robotic tilt table reduces the occurrence of orthostatic hypotension over time in vegetative states

date: 2015 Jun;38(2):162-6.
author: Taveggia G.
publication: Int. J Rhabil Res.
PubMed ID:25591054

Abstract

The aim of this study is to evaluate the effects of verticalization with or without combined movement of the lower limbs in patients in a vegetative state or a minimally conscious state. In particular, we aimed to study whether, in the group with combined movement, there was better tolerance to verticalization. This was a randomized trial conducted in a neurorehabilitation hospital. Twelve patients with vegetative state and minimally conscious state 3-18 months after acute acquired brain injuries were included. Patients were randomized into A and B treatment groups. Study group A underwent verticalization with a tilt table at 65° and movimentation of the lower limbs with a robotic system for 30 min three times a week for 24 sessions. Control group B underwent the same rehabilitation treatment, with a robotic verticalization system, but an inactive lower-limb movement system. Systolic and diastolic blood pressure and heart rate were determined. Robotic movement of the lower limbs can reduce the occurrence of orthostatic hypotension in hemodynamically unstable patients. Despite the small number of patients involved (only eight patients completed the trial), our results indicate that blood pressures and heart rate can be stabilized better (with) by treatment with passive leg movements in hemodynamically unstable patients.

Does regular standing improve bowel function in people with spinal cord injury? A randomised crossover trial

date: 2015 Jan;53(1):36-41. doi:
author: Kwok S.
publication: Spinal Cord.
PubMed ID:25366527

Abstract

STUDY DESIGN:

A randomised crossover trial.

OBJECTIVES:

To determine the effects of a 6-week standing programme on bowel function in people with spinal cord injury.

SETTING:

Community, Australia and the United Kingdom.

METHODS:

Twenty community-dwelling people with motor complete spinal cord injury above T8 participated in a 16-week trial. The trial consisted of a 6-week stand phase and a 6-week no-stand phase separated by a 4-week washout period. Participants were randomised to one of two treatment sequences. Participants allocated to the Treatment First group stood on a tilt table for 30 min per session, five times per week for 6 weeks and then did not stand for the next 10 weeks. Participants allocated to the Control First group did the opposite: they did not stand for 10 weeks and then stood for 6 weeks. Participants in both groups received routine bowel care throughout the 16-week trial. Assessments occurred at weeks 0, 7, 10 and 17 corresponding with pre and post stand and no-stand phases. The primary outcome was Time to First Stool. There were seven secondary outcomes reflecting other aspects of bowel function and spasticity.

RESULTS:

There were three dropouts leaving complete data sets on 17 participants. The mean (95% confidence interval) between-intervention difference for Time to First Stool was 0 min (-7 to 7) indicating no effect of regular standing on Time to First Stool.

CONCLUSION:

Regular standing does not reduce Time to First Stool. Further trials are required to test the veracity of some commonly held assumptions about the benefits of regular standing for bowel function

The effect of progressive task-oriented training on a supplementary tilt table on lower extremity muscle strength and gait recovery in patients with hemiplegic stroke.

date: 2015 Feb;41(2):425-30. doi
author: Kim C-Y.
publication: Gait Posture
PubMed ID:25467171

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine the influence of progressive taskoriented training on a supplementary tilt table on the lower extremity (LE) muscle strength and spatiotemporal parameters of gait in subjects with hemiplegic stroke. Thirty subjects between three and nine months post stroke were included in this study. Thirty subjects were randomly allocated to a control group (CG, n1=10), experimental group I (EG1, n2=10), and experimental group II (EG2, n3=10). All of the subjects received routine therapy for half an hour, five times a week for three weeks and additionally received training on the following three different tilt table applications for 20min a day: (1) both knee belts of the tilt table were fastened (CG), (2) only the affected side knee belt of the tilt table was fastened and one-leg standing training was performed using the less-affected LE (EG1), and (3) only the affected side knee belt of the tilt table was fastened and progressive taskoriented training was performed using the less-affected LE (EG2). The effect of tilt table applications was assessed using a hand-held dynamometer for LE muscle strength and GAITRite for spatiotemporal gait data. Our results showed that there was a significantly greater increase in the strength of all LE muscle groups, gait velocity, cadence, and stride length, a decrease in the double limb support period, and an improvement in gait asymmetry in subjects who underwent progressive taskoriented training on a supplementary tilt table compared to those in the other groups. These findings suggest that progressive taskoriented training on a supplementary tilt table can improve the LE muscle strength and spatiotemporal parameters of gait at an early stage of rehabilitation of subjects with hemiplegic stroke

Lower extremity muscle activation and function in progressive task-oriented training on the supplementary tilt table during stepping-like movements in patients with acute stroke hemiparesis.

date: 2015 Jun;25(3):522-30
author: Kim C-Y.
publication: J Electromyogr Kinesiol.
PubMed ID:25863464

Abstract

An effective and standardized method for applying a tilt table as a supplementary treatment in the early rehabilitation of stroke patients is still missing. The aim of this study was to determine the influence of progressive task-oriented training on the tilt table on the improvement in lower extremity (LE) muscle activation and clinical function in subjects with hemiplegia due to stroke. Thirty-nine subjects with acute stroke were randomly allocated to three groups; control group, tilt table group, and task-oriented training group on the tilt table, with 13 patients, respectively. All of the subjects received the routine therapy for half an hour, and subjects in the experimental groups additionally received training on two different tilt table applications for 20min a day, five times a week for three weeks. The effect of tilt table applications was assessed using the surface electromyography (EMG) analysis during stepping-like movements on the tilt table for LE muscle activation and clinical scores for function. Our results showed that there was a significantly greater increase in the EMG patterns of the extensors and flexors of the affected leg muscles during flexion and extension movements of both legs and clinical scores in patients undergoing the progressive task-oriented training on the tilt table compared to the other groups. These findings suggest that progressive task-oriented training on the tilt table can improve LE muscle activation and clinical scores of functional performance for early rehabilitation of subjects with acute stroke.

Non-surgical management of ankle contracture following acquired brain injury.

date: 2004 Mar 18;26(6):335-45.
author: Singer B.
publication: Disabil Rehabil
PubMed ID:15204485

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE:

The purpose of this study was to document the outcome of non-surgical management of equinovarus ankle contracture in a cohort of patients with acquired brain injury admitted to a specialist Neurosurgical Rehabilitation Unit.

METHODS:

This prospective descriptive study examined all patients with a new diagnosis of moderate to severe acquired brain injury (Glasgow Coma Scale score </=12) admitted for rehabilitation over a 1 year period. Ankle dorsiflexion range and plantarflexor/invertor muscle activity were evaluated weekly during the period of hospitalization. Contracture was defined as maximal passive range of motion </= 0 degrees dorsiflexion, with the knee extended, on a minimum of two measurement occasions. Patients were retrospectively allocated to one of four treatment outcome categories according to ankle dorsiflexion range, type of intervention required and response to treatment.

RESULTS:

Ankle contracture was identified in 40 of the 105 patients studied. Contracture resolved with a standard physiotherapy treatment programme, including prolonged weight-bearing stretches and motor re-education, in 23 patients. Contracture persisted or worsened in 17 of 40 cases, all of whom exhibited dystonic muscle overactivity producing sustained equinovarus posturing. Ten of 17 cases required serial plaster casting (+/- injection of botulinum toxin type A) in order to achieve a functional range of ankle motion. Remediation of ankle contracture was not considered a priority in the remaining seven patients due to the severity of their overall disability.

CONCLUSION:

The incidence of ankle contracture identified in this population was considerably less than previously reported. Reduced dorsiflexion range was remediated with standard physiotherapy treatment in over half of the cases. Additional treatment with serial casting +/- botulinum toxin type-A injection was required to correct persistent or worsening contracture in one quarter of cases. Dystonic extensor muscle overactivity was a major contributor to persistent or progressive ankle contracture.

Monitoring standing wheelchair use after spinal cord injury: a case report.

date: 2005 Feb 4;27(3):142-6
author: Shields RK.
publication: Disabil Rehabil
PubMed ID:15823996

Abstract

PURPOSE:

An important issue in spinal cord injury (SCI) research is whether standing can yield positive health benefits. However, quantifying dose of standing and establishing subject compliance with a standing protocol is difficult. This case report describes a method to monitor dose of standing outside the laboratory, describes the standing patterns of one subject, and describes this subject’s satisfaction with the standing protocol.

METHOD:

A man with T-10 complete paraplegia agreed to have his commercially available standing wheelchair instrumented with a custom-designed logging device for a 2-year period. The micro-controller-based logger, under custom software control, was mounted to the standing wheelchair. The logger recorded date, duration, angle of standing, and start/stop times.

RESULTS:

The client exceeded a suggested minimum dosage of standing per month (130.4% of goal), choosing to stand for short bouts (mean = 11.57 min) at an average angle of 61 degrees, on an average 3.86 days per calendar week. He was generally very satisfied with the standing device and provided subjective reports of improved spasticity and bowel motility.

CONCLUSION:

This case report describes a standing and surveillance system that allow quantification of standing dose. Future controlled studies are needed to evaluate whether standing can be beneficially affect secondary complications after SCI.

Effects of a standing table on work productivity and posture in an adult with developmental disabilities.

date: 1997;9(1):13-20. doi
author: Nelson D.
publication: Work
PubMed ID:24441921

Abstract

The standing table is an assistive device designed to encourage occupational performance of the upper extremities while helping the person compensate for limitations in standing posture. We conducted three single-subject studies of a standing table used by a 52-year-old man with spastic cerebral palsy and mental retardation. In the first study, positioning in the standing table resulted in no discernible difference in work output per hour in comparison to his customary seated posture. In the second study, positioning in the standing table resulted in an unexpectedly small increase in work output in comparison to his customary method of standing without special support at the work bench. In the third study, we demonstrated that the standing table dramatically improved the erectness of his posture as measured by an infrared motion detector in comparison to his customary method of standing. Because work productivity depends on multiple factors, improved posture and biomechanical stability do no always result in a proportionate improvement in work output. There remain multiple justifications of equipment such as the standing table in work settings for adults with developmental disabilities.

Clinical evaluation of a new biofeedback standing balance training device.

date: 1996 Mar-Apr;20(2):60-6.
author: Lee M.
publication: J Med Eng.
PubMed ID:8836924

Abstract

For patients with neurological damage of the central nervous system, such as that due to cerebrovascular accident (CVA), standing balance training is a critical therapeutic procedure to be undertaken before walking and self-care training. The identification and characterization of neurological disorder in postural steadiness will enhance our understanding of the postural control system, and help to identify patients at risk of falls in the CVA population. This paper discusses the design and clinical evaluation of a new biofeedback training device for static (postural steadiness) performance of the standing balance system. The device includes a height adjustable standing table, an instrumented force sensing platform, an on-line weight bearing audio/visual biofeedback system, a postural correction mirror, and a belt suspension system for the upper extremities. A quantitative evaluation protocol of bilateral asymmetries in weight distribution and postural sway to characterize standing balance with the force sensing platform is discussed. Finally, the clinical evaluation results of sixty patients with hemiplegia from acute stroke for a period of four weeks are discussed. With this economic standing training device, the static standing steadiness can be trained effectively through weight bearing biofeedback and a postural correction mirror in the clinical and home caring environments.

Early poststroke rehabilitation using a robotic tilt-table stepper and functional electrical stimulation

date: 2013;2013:946056
author: Kuznetsov AN,
publication: Stroke Res Treat.
PubMed ID:23691432

Abstract

Background. Stroke frequently leaves survivors with hemiparesis. To prevent persistent deficits, rehabilitation may be more effective if started early. Early training is often limited because of orthostatic reactions. Tilt-table stepping robots and functional electrical stimulation (FES) may prevent these reactions. Objective. This controlled convenience sample study compares safety and feasibility of robotic tilt-table training plus FES (ROBO-FES) and robotic tilt-table training (ROBO) against tilt-table training alone (control). A preliminary assessment of efficacy is performed. Methods. Hemiparetic ischemic stroke survivors (age 58.3 ± 1.2 years, 4.6 ± 1.2 days after stroke) were assigned to 30 days of ROBO-FES (n = 38), ROBO (n = 35), or control (n = 31) in addition to conventional physical therapy. Impedance cardiography and transcranial doppler sonography were performed before, during, and after training. Hemiparesis was assessed using the British Medical Research Council (MRC) strength scale. Results. No serious adverse events occurred; 8 patients in the tilt-table group prematurely quit the study because of orthostatic reactions. Blood pressure and CBFV dipped <10% during robot training. In 52% of controls mean arterial pressure decreased by ≥20%. ROBO-FES increased leg strength by 1.97 ± 0.88 points, ROBO by 1.50 ± 0.85 more than control (1.03 ± 0.61, P < 0.05). CBFV increased in both robotic groups more than in controls (P < 0.05). Conclusions. Robotic tilt-table exercise with or without FES is safe and may be more effective in improving leg strength and cerebral blood flow than tilt table alone.