Physiotherapy - Research Publications
Now showing items 1-12 of 464
Factors Impacting Early Mobilization Following Hip Fracture: An Observational Study
(Wolters Kluwer, 2021-04)
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Hip fracture guidelines emphasize mobilization within 48 hours of surgery. The aims of this audit were to determine the proportion of patients with hip fracture who mobilize within 48 hours, identify factors associated with delayed mobilization, and identify barriers to mobilization. METHODS: Single-site prospective audit of 100 consecutive patients (age 82 ± 9 years) admitted for surgical management of hip fracture. Data collected included time to mobilization, factors that may impact mobilization (age, weight-bearing status, additional injuries, premorbid mobility status, time to surgery, dementia, delirium, and postoperative complications), and barriers to mobilization as identified by the physical therapist. RESULTS AND DISCUSSION: Mobilization within 48 hours of surgery was achieved by 43% of patients. Multivariate logistic regression demonstrated odds of mobilizing early increased with higher New Mobility Scores, representing better premorbid mobility (odds ratio [OR] = 1.30; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.06-1.60); odds reduced if delirium was present on day 1 or 2 (OR = 0.25; 95% CI, 0.08-0.79). New Mobility Scores 5 or more, which indicate independent premorbid mobility inside and outside the house, best predicted early mobilization in patients who did not develop delirium. No cutoff score was identified for those with delirium. Identified barriers to mobilization included patient confusion, manual handling risk, patient declined, and hypotension. CONCLUSIONS: Less than half of this cohort achieved the guideline of mobilization within 48 hours of surgery. Patients who develop delirium within the first 2 days of surgery or who had premorbid mobility limitation were less likely to mobilize. Identification of patients likely to have delayed mobilization will assist physical therapists with delivering appropriate management to patients with hip fracture during their acute hospital stay.
Look Before You Leap: Interventions Supervised via Telehealth Involving Activities in Weight-Bearing or Standing Positions for People After Stroke-A Scoping Review.
(Oxford University Press (OUP), 2021-02-22)
OBJECTIVES: The COVID-19 pandemic has seen a rapid shift to telehealth delivered physical therapy services. Common impairments after stroke create unique challenges when providing rehabilitation via telehealth, particularly when it involves activities undertaken in weight-bearing or standing positions, including walking training. Our scoping review maps the evidence regarding safety, efficacy and feasibility of remotely supervised telehealth interventions involving activities undertaken in weight-bearing or standing positions for people after stroke. METHODS: Searches of relevant databases for primary research studies were conducted using keywords relating to exercise and telehealth. Studies of stroke survivors undertaking interventions involving activities in weightbearing or standing positions, supervised in real-time via telehealth were included. Two reviewers independently appraised all studies. Data were charted by one reviewer, checked by another and results synthesized narratively. RESULTS: Seven studies (two randomized trials, one mixed-methods and four pre-post studies) were included, involving 179 participants. Some studies included stroke survivors with cognitive impairment and two (29%) studies only included participants who walked independently. Adherence (reported in three studies) and satisfaction (reported in four studies) was good, and no serious adverse events (data from four studies) related to interventions were reported. Strategies to overcome technological barriers were used to optimize intervention safety and feasibility, along with physiological monitoring, caregiver assistance and in-person exercise prescription. However, there is limited high quality evidence of efficacy. CONCLUSIONS: We identified strategies used in research to date which can support current practice. However, urgent research is needed to ensure that stroke survivors are receiving evidence-based, effective services. IMPACT: The COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated a rapid shift to telerehabilitation services for people with stroke, but there is little evidence to guide best practice. Our review provides practical guidance and strategies to overcome barriers, and optimize safety and adherence for telehealth interventions involving activities in weightbearing or standing positions.
Association Between Therapeutic Alliance and Outcomes Following Telephone-Delivered Exercise by a Physical Therapist for People With Knee Osteoarthritis: Secondary Analyses From a Randomized Controlled Trial.
(JMIR Publications Inc., 2021-01-18)
BACKGROUND: The therapeutic alliance between patients and physical therapists has been shown to influence clinical outcomes in patients with chronic low back pain when consulting in-person. However, no studies have examined whether the therapeutic alliance developed between patients with knee osteoarthritis and physical therapists during telephonic consultations influences clinical outcomes. OBJECTIVE: This study aims to investigate whether the therapeutic alliance between patients with knee osteoarthritis and physical therapists measured after the second consultation is associated with outcomes following telephone-delivered exercise and advice. METHODS: Secondary analysis of 87 patients in the intervention arm of a randomized controlled trial allocated to receive 5 to 10 telephone consultations with one of 8 physical therapists over a period of 6 months, involving education and prescription of a strengthening and physical activity program. Separate regression models investigated the association between patient and therapist ratings of therapeutic alliance (measured after the second consultation using the Working Alliance Inventory Short Form) and outcomes (pain, function, self-efficacy, quality of life, global change, adherence to prescribed exercise, physical activity) at 6 and 12 months, with relevant covariates included. RESULTS: There was some evidence of a weak association between patient ratings of the alliance and some outcomes at 6 months (improvements in average knee pain: regression coefficient -0.10, 95% CI -0.16 to -0.03; self-efficacy: 0.16, 0.04-0.28; global improvement in function: odds ratio 1.26, 95% CI 1.04-1.39, and overall improvement: odds ratio 1.26, 95% CI 1.06-1.51; but also with worsening in fear of movement: regression coefficient -0.13, 95% CI -0.23 to -0.04). In addition, there was some evidence of a weak association between patient ratings of the alliance and some outcomes at 12 months (improvements in self-efficacy: regression coefficient 0.15, 95% CI 0.03-0.27; global improvement in both function, odds ratio 1.19, 95% CI 0.03-1.37; and pain, odds ratio 1.14, 95% CI 1.01-1.30; and overall improvement: odds ratio 1.21, 95% CI 1.02-1.42). The data suggest that associations between therapist ratings of therapeutic alliance and outcomes were not strong, except for improved quality of life at 12 months (regression coefficient 0.01, 95% CI 0.0003-0.01). CONCLUSIONS: Higher patient ratings, but not higher therapist ratings, of the therapeutic alliance were weakly associated with improvements in some clinical outcomes and with worsening in one outcome. Although the findings suggest that patients who perceive a stronger alliance with their therapist may achieve better clinical outcomes, the observed relationships were generally weak and unlikely to be clinically significant. The limitations include the fact that measures of therapeutic alliance have not been validated for use in musculoskeletal physical therapy settings. There was a risk of type 1 error; however, findings were interpreted on the basis of clinical significance rather than statistical significance alone. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ACTRN12616000054415; https://www.anzctr.org.au/Trial/Registration/TrialReview.aspx?id=369204.
Developmental Coordination Disorder and Cerebral Palsy: Is There a Continuum?
(Springer Science and Business Media LLC, 2014-06-01)
Current diagnostic scheduling views cerebral palsy (CP) and developmental coordination disorder (DCD) as distinct disorders, though some hypothesise that the two lie on a continuum of motor impairment. We review recent evidence surrounding risk factors and underlying neurological mechanisms for both disorders, which we argue are central to clarifying this debate. Research highlights some common pre-, peri- and neo-natal risk factors for CP and DCD, indicating potential similarities in aetiology. Neurophysiological data, however, are conflicting. There is evidence of an overlap in micro- and macro-structural abnormalities only when DCD samples include children exposed to pre- and peri-natal adversities, suggesting subgroups. There is a distinct lack of experimental work directly comparing children with DCD with and without exposure to pre- and peri-natal adversity, or children with CP and DCD. Hence, firm conclusions about the CP-DCD continuum debate cannot be drawn until neuroimaging and experimental work to this end is conducted.
Neurobehavioral evaluation in the preterm and term infant.
(Bentham Science Publishers Ltd., 2014)
Neurobehavioral examinations of babies, both term and preterm, have been used in neonatology for many decades. However, with the advent of new technologies and, perhaps more "scientific" ways of assessing high risk infants, it seems that neurobehavioral examinations may have become somewhat redundant in some nurseries. Yet these examinations remain an important part of clinical practice. They help to increase our understanding of an infant's behavior, including their strengths and vulnerabilities, thus enabling us to adjust our care and parent education accordingly. These examinations also assist us to identify those most at risk of developmental disabilities, enabling further assessment and intervention to be considered as early as possible. Whilst it remains a challenge to try and quantify neonatal neurobehavior, there are numerous tools available that can greatly assist us. This review did not find a tool that served all populations and all assessment purposes. Consequently, the clinician or researcher needs to choose the appropriate assessment depending on matters such as the infant's gestation and the assessment's goal and training requirements. Further research is needed to develop neurobehavioral assessment tools, particularly for extremely preterm infants, which are easily accessible in the clinical setting and can be used from birth.
Economic Evaluation of Active Implementation versus Guideline Dissemination for Evidence-Based Care of Acute Low-Back Pain in a General Practice Setting
(PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE, 2013-10-11)
INTRODUCTION: The development and publication of clinical practice guidelines for acute low-back pain has resulted in evidence-based recommendations that have the potential to improve the quality and safety of care for acute low-back pain. Development and dissemination of guidelines may not, however, be sufficient to produce improvements in clinical practice; further investment in active implementation of guideline recommendations may be required. Further research is required to quantify the trade-off between the additional upfront cost of active implementation of guideline recommendations for low-back pain and any resulting improvements in clinical practice. METHODS: Cost-effectiveness analysis alongside the IMPLEMENT trial from a health sector perspective to compare active implementation of guideline recommendations via the IMPLEMENT intervention (plus standard dissemination) against standard dissemination alone. RESULTS: The base-case analysis suggests that delivery of the IMPLEMENT intervention dominates standard dissemination (less costly and more effective), yielding savings of $135 per x-ray referral avoided (-$462.93/3.43). However, confidence intervals around point estimates for the primary outcome suggest that--irrespective of willingness to pay (WTP)--we cannot be at least 95% confident that the IMPLEMENT intervention differs in value from standard dissemination. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings demonstrate that moving beyond development and dissemination to active implementation entails a significant additional upfront investment that may not be offset by health gains and/or reductions in health service utilization of sufficient magnitude to render active implementation cost-effective.
Low-cost evaluation and real-time feedback of static and dynamic weight bearing asymmetry in patients undergoing in-patient physiotherapy rehabilitation for neurological conditions
BACKGROUND: Weight bearing asymmetry is common in patients with neurological conditions, and recent advances in gaming technology have produced force platforms that are suitable for use in a clinical setting. The aim of this research is to determine whether commercially-available Wii Balance Boards with customized software providing real-time feedback could be used in a clinical setting to evaluate and improve weight-bearing asymmetry in people with various neurological conditions. METHODS: Twenty participants (age = 43.25 ± 19.37 years) receiving physiotherapy as a result of a neurological condition performed three trials each of two tasks (static standing and sit-to-stand) with and without visual feedback. Vertical forces were measured using available Wii Balance Boards coupled with customized software that displayed visual feedback in real-time. Primary outcome measures included weight-bearing asymmetry as a percentage of body mass, peak force symmetry index, and a visual analogue scale score rating self-perceived level of asymmetry. RESULTS: Weight-bearing asymmetry during the static balance task was significantly reduced (Z = -2.912, p = 0.004, ES = 0.65) with visual feedback. There was no significant difference (Z = -0.336, p = 0.737) with visual feedback for the dynamic task, however subgroup analysis indicated that those with higher weight-bearing asymmetry responded the most to feedback. Correlation analysis revealed little or no relationship between participant perception of weight-bearing asymmetry and the results for the static or dynamic balance task (Spearman's rho: ρ = 0.138, p = 0.561 and ρ = 0.018, ρ =0.940 respectively). CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that weight-bearing asymmetry can be reduced during static tasks in patients with neurological conditions using inexpensive commercially-available Wii Balance Boards coupled with customized visual feedback software. Further research is needed to determine whether real-time visual feedback is appropriate for reducing dynamic weight-bearing asymmetry, whether improvements result in improved physical function, and how cognitive and physical impairments influence the patient's ability to respond to treatment.
Strength Training for Arthritis Trial (START): design and rationale
BACKGROUND: Muscle loss and fat gain contribute to the disability, pain, and morbidity associated with knee osteoarthritis (OA), and thigh muscle weakness is an independent and modifiable risk factor for it. However, while all published treatment guidelines recommend muscle strengthening exercise to combat loss of muscle mass and strength in knee OA patients, previous strength training studies either used intensities or loads below recommended levels for healthy adults or were generally short, lasting only 6 to 24 weeks. The efficacy of high-intensity strength training in improving OA symptoms, slowing progression, and affecting the underlying mechanisms has not been examined due to the unsubstantiated belief that it might exacerbate symptoms. We hypothesize that in addition to short-term clinical benefits, combining greater duration with high-intensity strength training will alter thigh composition sufficiently to attain long-term reductions in knee-joint forces, lower pain levels, decrease inflammatory cytokines, and slow OA progression. METHODS/DESIGN: This is an assessor-blind, randomized controlled trial. The study population consists of 372 older (age ≥ 55 yrs) ambulatory, community-dwelling persons with: (1) mild-to-moderate medial tibiofemoral OA (Kellgren-Lawrence (KL) = 2 or 3); (2) knee neutral or varus aligned knee ( -2° valgus ≤ angle ≤ 10° varus); (3) 20 kg.m-2 ≥ BMI ≤ 45 kg.m-2; and (3) no participation in a formal strength-training program for more than 30 minutes per week within the past 6 months. Participants are randomized to one of 3 groups: high-intensity strength training (75-90% 1Repetition Maximum (1RM)); low-intensity strength training (30-40%1RM); or healthy living education. The primary clinical aim is to compare the interventions' effects on knee pain, and the primary mechanistic aim is to compare their effects on knee-joint compressive forces during walking, a mechanism that affects the OA disease pathway. Secondary aims will compare the interventions' effects on additional clinical measures of disease severity (e.g., function, mobility); disease progression measured by x-ray; thigh muscle and fat volume, measured by computed tomography (CT); components of thigh muscle function, including hip abductor strength and quadriceps strength, and power; additional measures of knee-joint loading; inflammatory and OA biomarkers; and health-related quality of life. DISCUSSION: Test-retest reliability for the thigh CT scan was: total thigh volume, intra-class correlation coefficients (ICC) = 0.99; total fat volume, ICC = 0.99, and total muscle volume, ICC = 0.99. ICC for both isokinetic concentric knee flexion and extension strength was 0.93, and for hip-abductor concentric strength was 0.99. The reliability of our 1RM testing was: leg press, ICC = 0.95; leg curl, ICC = 0.99; and leg extension, ICC = 0.98. Results of this trial will provide critically needed guidance for clinicians in a variety of health professions who prescribe and oversee treatment and prevention of OA-related complications. Given the prevalence and impact of OA and the widespread availability of this intervention, assessing the efficacy of optimal strength training has the potential for immediate and vital clinical impact. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT01489462.
Evaluation of a Theory-Informed Implementation Intervention for the Management of Acute Low Back Pain in General Medical Practice: The IMPLEMENT Cluster Randomised Trial
(PUBLIC LIBRARY SCIENCE, 2013-06-13)
INTRODUCTION: This cluster randomised trial evaluated an intervention to decrease x-ray referrals and increase giving advice to stay active for people with acute low back pain (LBP) in general practice. METHODS: General practices were randomised to either access to a guideline for acute LBP (control) or facilitated interactive workshops (intervention). We measured behavioural predictors (e.g. knowledge, attitudes and intentions) and fear avoidance beliefs. We were unable to recruit sufficient patients to measure our original primary outcomes so we introduced other outcomes measured at the general practitioner (GP) level: behavioural simulation (clinical decision about vignettes) and rates of x-ray and CT-scan (medical administrative data). All those not involved in the delivery of the intervention were blinded to allocation. RESULTS: 47 practices (53 GPs) were randomised to the control and 45 practices (59 GPs) to the intervention. The number of GPs available for analysis at 12 months varied by outcome due to missing confounder information; a minimum of 38 GPs were available from the intervention group, and a minimum of 40 GPs from the control group. For the behavioural constructs, although effect estimates were small, the intervention group GPs had greater intention of practising consistent with the guideline for the clinical behaviour of x-ray referral. For behavioural simulation, intervention group GPs were more likely to adhere to guideline recommendations about x-ray (OR 1.76, 95%CI 1.01, 3.05) and more likely to give advice to stay active (OR 4.49, 95%CI 1.90 to 10.60). Imaging referral was not statistically significantly different between groups and the potential importance of effects was unclear; rate ratio 0.87 (95%CI 0.68, 1.10) for x-ray or CT-scan. CONCLUSIONS: The intervention led to small changes in GP intention to practice in a manner that is consistent with an evidence-based guideline, but it did not result in statistically significant changes in actual behaviour. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ACTRN012606000098538.
The use of the international classification of functioning, disability and health (ICF) in indigenous healthcare: a systematic literature review
INTRODUCTION: The International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) was endorsed by the World Health Organisation (WHO) in 2001 to obtain a comprehensive perspective of health and functioning of individuals and groups. Health disparities exist between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians and there is a need to understand the health experiences of Indigenous communities from Indigenous Australian's perspectives in order to develop and implement culturally appropriate and effective intervention strategies to improve Indigenous health. This systematic review examines the literature to identify the extent and context of use of the ICF in Indigenous healthcare, to provide the foundation on which to consider its potential use for understanding the health experiences of Indigenous communities from their perspective. METHODS: The search was conducted between May and June 2012 of five scientific and medical electronic databases: MEDLINE, Web of Science, CINAHL, Academic Search Complete and PsychInfo and six Indigenous-specific databases: AIATSIS, APAIS-health, ATSI-health, health and society, MAIS-ATSIS and RURAL. Reference lists of included papers were also searched. Articles which applied the ICF within an Indigenous context were selected. Quantitative and qualitative data were extracted and analysed by two independent reviewers. Agreement was reached by consensus. RESULTS: Five articles met the inclusion criteria however two of the articles were not exclusively in an Indigenous context. One article applied the ICF in the context of understanding the health experience and priorities of Indigenous people and a second study had a similar focus but used the revised version of the International Classification of Impairments, Disability and Handicap (ICIDH-2), the predecessor to the ICF. Four of the five papers involved Indigenous Australians, and one of the paper’s participants were Indigenous (First Nation) Canadians. CONCLUSION: Literature referring to the use of the ICF with Indigenous populations is limited. The ICF has the potential to help understand the health and functioning experience of Indigenous persons from their perspective. Further research is required to determine if the ICF is a culturally appropriate tool and whether it is able to capture the Indigenous health experience or whether modification of the framework is necessary for use with this population.
Reliability and validity of the Microsoft Kinect for evaluating static foot posture
BACKGROUND: The evaluation of foot posture in a clinical setting is useful to screen for potential injury, however disagreement remains as to which method has the greatest clinical utility. An inexpensive and widely available imaging system, the Microsoft Kinect™, may possess the characteristics to objectively evaluate static foot posture in a clinical setting with high accuracy. The aim of this study was to assess the intra-rater reliability and validity of this system for assessing static foot posture. METHODS: Three measures were used to assess static foot posture; traditional visual observation using the Foot Posture Index (FPI), a 3D motion analysis (3DMA) system and software designed to collect and analyse image and depth data from the Kinect. Spearman's rho was used to assess intra-rater reliability and concurrent validity of the Kinect to evaluate foot posture, and a linear regression was used to examine the ability of the Kinect to predict total visual FPI score. RESULTS: The Kinect demonstrated moderate to good intra-rater reliability for four FPI items of foot posture (ρ = 0.62 to 0.78) and moderate to good correlations with the 3DMA system for four items of foot posture (ρ = 0.51 to 0.85). In contrast, intra-rater reliability of visual FPI items was poor to moderate (ρ = 0.17 to 0.63), and correlations with the Kinect and 3DMA systems were poor (absolute ρ = 0.01 to 0.44). Kinect FPI items with moderate to good reliability predicted 61% of the variance in total visual FPI score. CONCLUSIONS: The majority of the foot posture items derived using the Kinect were more reliable than the traditional visual assessment of FPI, and were valid when compared to a 3DMA system. Individual foot posture items recorded using the Kinect were also shown to predict a moderate degree of variance in the total visual FPI score. Combined, these results support the future potential of the Kinect to accurately evaluate static foot posture in a clinical setting.