Meyer-Heim, A.; Ammann-Reiffer, C.; Schmartz, A.; Schäfer, Jan; Sennhauser, F. H.; Heinen, Florian; Knecht, B.; Dabrowski, E.; Borggraefe, Ingo
Improvement of walking abilities after robotic-assisted locomotion training in children with cerebral palsy.
In: Archives of Disease in Childhood, Vol. 94: pp. 615-620
Objective: To measure functional gait improvements of
robotic-assisted locomotion training in children with
cerebral palsy (CP).
Design: Single-case experimental A-B design.
Settings: Rehabilitation Centre Affoltern am Albis,
Children’s University Hospital Zurich, Switzerland (inpatient
group) and Neurology Department of the Dr von
Haunersches Children’s Hospital Munich, Germany (outpatient
Participants: 22 children (mean age 8.6 years, range
4.6–11.7) with CP and a Gross Motor Function
Classification System level II to IV.
Interventions: 3 to 5 sessions of 45–60 minutes/week
during a 3–5-week period of driven gait orthosis training.
Main outcome measures: 10-metre walk test
(10MWT), 6-minute walk test (6MinWT), Gross Motor
Function Measure (GMFM-66) dimension D (standing) and
dimension E (walking), and Functional Ambulation
Results: The mean (SD) maximum gait speed (0.78
(0.57) to 0.91 (0.61) m/s; p,0.01) as well as the mean
(SD) dimension D of the GMFM-66 (40.3% (31.3%) to
46.6% (28.7%); p,0.05) improved significantly after the
intervention period. The mean (SD) 6MinWT (176.3
(141.8) to 199.5 (157.7) m), the mean FAC (2.6 (1.7) to
3.0 (1.6)) and the mean (SD) dimension E of the GMFM-
66 (29.5% (30.3%) to 31.6% (29.2%)) also showed an
increase, but did not reach a statistically significant level.
Conclusion: These results suggest that children with CP
benefit from robotic-assisted gait training in improving
functional gait parameters.