Decreased energy cost and improved gait pattern using a new orthosis in persons with long-term stroke.
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SourceArchives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 88, 2, (2007), pp. 181-186
Article / Letter to editor
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Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
SubjectDCN 2: Functional Neurogenomics; IGMD 5: Health aging / healthy living; NCEBP 14: Cardiovascular diseases; UMCN 2.2: Vascular medicine and diabetes; UMCN 3.2: Cognitive neurosciences
OBJECTIVE: To measure energy cost and gait analysis in persons with stroke with and without a newly developed orthosis. DESIGN: Immediate and long-term (3wk) intervention (before-after trial). SETTING: University medical center. PARTICIPANTS: Volunteer sample of 27 persons with long-term (range, 0.6-19y) hemiparetic stroke. INTERVENTION: Three-week familiarization to the new walking aid. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Energy cost (per distance walked), preferred walking speed (PWS), and step length. Energy cost was examined in all subjects while walking on a treadmill at 3 different velocities (PWS, PWS+30%, PWS-30%) during 3 different situations (without orthosis, with orthosis, after 3-wk orthosis familiarization). Spatiotemporal aspects of the gait pattern were examined using a 6-m instrumented walkway system. RESULTS: Using the orthosis immediately decreased energy cost in persons with stroke during walking at the PWS (P<.001) and significantly increased walking speed (P<.005) and step length (P<.001). After 3 weeks of familiarization to the orthosis, energy cost at the PWS and at PWS+30% showed further improvement in energy cost (P<.05). CONCLUSIONS: The newly developed orthosis immediately decreases energy cost and improves walking speed and step length in persons with long-term stroke. After only 3 weeks of orthosis familiarization, energy cost shows additional improvement.
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