The latest medical research on Rehabilitation Medicine

The research magnet gathers the latest research from around the web, based on your specialty area. Below you will find a sample of some of the most recent articles from reputable medical journals about rehabilitation medicine gathered by our medical AI research bot.

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No advantage of plaster casting following carpal tunnel release: A randomized controlled study.

Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine

To compare the effects of 2 postoperative regimens following carpal tunnel release: plaster casting and elastic bandaging.

A total of 94 patients were randomized to either plaster casting or elastic bandaging to be used 2 weeks postoperatively. Muscle strength, pain rated on a visual analogue scale, range of movement, sensibility, oedema, and different scores regarding symptoms and function were measured before and 2, 4, 6, 8 and 26 weeks after surgery.

No differences were found between the 2 groups for any measurement, except for the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand (DASH) Health score and daily function, rated 2 weeks postoperatively, in which the bandage group scored better. Both groups improved significantly over time for all measurements, sensibility was improved [AQ16] after 2 weeks, while strength was not fully recovered until week 26.

Following carpal tunnel release no benefits were found in using plaster casting, compared with elastic bandaging. Among these patients there was more discomfort during plaster casting compared with elastic bandaging; therefore plaster casting is not recommended following this type of surgery.

Supervised physical therapy versus unsupervised exercise for patients with lumbar spinal stenosis: 1-year follow-up of a randomized controlled trial.

Clinical Rehabilitation

To compare the 1-year outcomes of patients with lumbar spinal stenosis treated with supervised physical therapy or unsupervised exercise.

A single-center randomized controlled trial with concealed allocation, blinded assessor and intention-to-treat analysis.

Spine care center.

A total of 86 patients presenting with symptoms of neurogenic claudication caused by lumbar spinal stenosis.

The physical therapy group received supervised physical therapy sessions twice a week for 6 weeks and home exercise program. The home exercise group received 6-week home exercise program only.

The primary outcome was symptom severity on the Zurich claudication questionnaire at 1 year. Secondary outcomes included physical function, pain, health-related quality of life and the surgery rate after 1 year.

At 1 year, more patients in the physical therapy group than in the home exercise group achieved minimum clinically important differences in Zurich claudication questionnaire symptom severity (60.5% vs 32.6%; adjusted odds ratio [AOR] 4.3, [95% CI [1.5-12.3], P = 0.01); Zurich claudication questionnaire physical function (55.8% vs 32.6%; AOR 3.0 [1.1-8.1], P = 0.03); SF-36 bodily pain (48.8% vs 25.6%; AOR 2.8 [1.1-7.3], P = 0.03), and SF-36 general health (20.9% vs 7.0%; AOR 6.1 [1.1-33.0], P = 0.04). The surgery rate at 1 year was lower in the physical therapy than in the home exercise group (7.0% vs 23.3%; AOR 0.2 [0.04-0.9] P = 0.04).

Supervised physical therapy produced greater improvements in symptom severity and physical function than unsupervised exercise and was associated with lower likelihood of receiving surgery within 1 year.

Disability assessment in stroke: Relationship among the pictorial-based Longshi Scale, the Barthel Index, and the modified Rankin Scale.

Clinical Rehabilitation

To explore the correlations among the Longshi Scale, the Barthel Index, and the modified Rankin Scale and the differentiate ability of the Longshi Scale and the modified Rankin Scale to Barthel Index scores.

Prospective study.

The inpatient rehabilitation units of three teaching hospitals in China.

A total of 343 stroke inpatients were recruited through convenience sampling.

Pictorial-based Longshi Scale, Barthel Index, and modified Rankin Scale.

The Longshi Scale was highly and moderately correlated with the Barthel Index and modified Rankin Scale, respectively. The median frequency distribution of the Barthel Index was slightly overlapped between Longshi Scale grades 2 and 3 but was considerably overlapped among modified Rankin Scale grades 1, 2, and 3. The Kruskal-Wallis and multiple comparison tests showed that, among the modified Rankin Scale grades, the median Barthel Index scores did not differentiate between grades 1 and 2 (χ2 = 20.643, P = 1.000), between grades 1 and 3 (χ2 = 60.404, P = 0.070), and between grades 2 and 3 (χ2 = 39.760, P = 0.232). Among the Longshi Scale grades, the median Barthel Index scores did not differentiate between grades 2 and 3 (χ2 = 48.778, P = 1.000), between grades 3 and 4 (χ2 = 57.094, P = 1.000), and between grades 5 and 6 (χ2 = 24.709, P = 1.000).

Using the Barthel Index as reference, the proposed Longshi Scale has better ability than the modified Rankin Scale in differentiating stroke patients' disability, especially for those with higher level of activities of daily living.

Efficacy of inspiratory muscle training on inspiratory muscle function, functional capacity, and quality of life in patients with asthma: A randomized controlled trial.

Clinical Rehabilitation

To evaluate the efficacy of an inspiratory muscle training protocol on inspiratory muscle function, functional capacity, and quality of life in patients with asthma.

A single-blind, randomized controlled clinical trial.


Patients with asthma, aged between 20 and 70 years old, non-smokers.

Participants were randomized into two groups: inspiratory muscle training group performed inspiratory muscle training 5 days a week for 8 weeks, consisting of six sets of 30 breaths per day with a training load ⩾50% of maximal inspiratory pressure, plus an educational program; the control group only received the educational program.

Maximal inspiratory pressure, inspiratory muscle endurance, and the distance performed on the incremental shuttle walking test were assessed pre-intervention, post-intervention and at follow-up (3 months after the end of the intervention). The asthma quality of life questionnaire was applied pre and post-intervention.

Data from 39 participants were analyzed. Maximal inspiratory pressure in percentage of predicted and endurance test duration were significantly higher post-intervention in the inspiratory muscle training group (∆ post-pre: 50.8% vs 7.3% of predicted - P < 0.001 and ∆ post-pre: 207.9 seconds vs 2.7 seconds - P < 0.001, respectively). There was no significant difference in the incremental shuttle walking distance between groups (∆ post-pre: 30.9 m vs -8.1 m, P = 0.165). Quality of life was perceived as significantly better, without a difference between groups (P > 0.05).

About 8 weeks of inspiratory muscle training in patients with controlled asthma significantly increased inspiratory muscle strength and endurance.

Development of a Comprehensive Outcome Measure for Motor Coordination, Step 2: Reliability and Construct Validity in Chronic Stroke Patients.

Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair

A comprehensive scale assessing motor coordination of multiple body segments was developed using a 3-phase content validation process. The Comprehensive Coordination Scale (CCS) evaluates motor coordination defined as the ability to produce context-dependent movements of multiple effectors in both spatial and temporal domains. The scale assesses motor coordination in individuals with neurological injuries at 2 levels of movement description: the motor performance level describes end point movements (ie, hand, foot), and the movement quality level describes limb joints/trunk movements contributing to end point movement.

To determine measurement properties of the scale in people with chronic stroke.

Standardized approaches determined the internal consistency (factor loadings), intrarater and interrater reliability (interclass correlation coefficient), measurement error (SEM; minimal detectable change [MDC]), construct validity, and interpretability (ie, ceiling and floor effects) of the CCS.

Data from 30 patients with chronic stroke were used for the analysis. The internal consistency of the scale was high (0.94), and the scale consisted of separate factors characterizing end point motor performance and movement quality. Intrarater (intraclass correlation coefficient [ICC] = 0.97-0.97) and interrater (ICC=0.76-0.98) reliability of the whole scale and subscales were good to excellent. The CCS had an SEM of 1.80 points (total score = 69 points) and an MDC95 of 4.98 points. The CCS total score was related to Fugl-Meyer Assessment total and motor scores and had no ceiling or floor effects.

The CCS scale has strong measurement properties and may be a useful measure of spatial and temporal coordination deficits in chronic stroke survivors.

Return-to-work self-efficacy after occupational rehabilitation for musculoskeletal and common mental health disorders: Secondary outcomes of a randomized clinical trial.

Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine

To assess the effects of adding a workplace intervention to inpatient occupational rehabilitation on return-to-work self-efficacy, and whether changes in return-to-work self-efficacy were associated with future work outcomes.

Between-group differences for 4 months follow-up were assessed using linear mixed models. Associations between self-efficacy scores and future sickness absence days during 12 months of follow-up were assessed by linear regression.

There were no statistically significant between-group differences in self-efficacy during follow-up. Participants with high or medium self-efficacy scores at the end of rehabilitation had fewer sickness absence days during follow-up compared with participants with low scores. Participants with consistently high scores or an increasing score throughout the programme showed fewer sickness absence days than those with reduced or consistently low scores.

Receiving an added workplace intervention did not increase return-to-work self-efficacy more than standard inpatient occupational rehabilitation alone. High scores and a positive development in return-to-work self-efficacy were associated with higher work participation. This suggests that return-to-work self-efficacy could be an important factor to consider in the return-to-work process.

Psychometric properties of the Cumulated Ambulation Score French translation.

Clinical Rehabilitation

To examine measurement properties (inter-rater reliability, agreement, validity, and responsiveness) of the Cumulated Ambulation Score French translation in patients with hip fracture.

Methodological study.

A 20-bed orthopedic unit and 20-bed geriatric unit.

About 140 consecutive patients with a mean (SD) age of 83 (12) years.

The English version of the Cumulated Ambulation Score used to evaluate basic mobility was translated into French following international guidelines. Two raters independently assessed all patients on postoperative days one, two, three, and 30 after a hip fracture surgery. Relative and absolute inter-rater reliability and responsiveness (effect size for improvement from postoperative day two to 30) were evaluated. Convergent validity was analyzed by Spearman's correlation coefficient comparing the Cumulated Ambulation Score with two other measures on postoperative day two and 30.

Cumulated Ambulation Score.

The weighted Kappa value ranged from 0.89 to 1.0. The standard error of measurement and the smallest real difference of the Cumulated Ambulation Score ranged, respectively, from 0.12 to 0.23 and from 0.32 to 0.6 points, while the effect size reached 1.03 (95% CI 0.87-1.26). There was a strong positive correlation comparing the Cumulated Ambulation Score with the French Tinetti Assessment Tool (r ⩾ 0.83) and the French Mini Motor Test (r ⩾ 0.79).

Our findings indicate that the Cumulated Ambulation Score's French version is a reliable and valid tool to assess patients' basic mobility with hip fractures.

Return to work following total knee arthroplasty: A multiple case study of stakeholder perspectives.

Clinical Rehabilitation

The study's aim was to gain insights into factors influencing sustainable return to work following total knee arthroplasty (TKA).

A descriptive multiple-case design was used. A case was defined as a worker's following TKA work disability situation.

The cases came from public hospitals in urban and semi-urban areas in Quebec (Canada) and involved mostly non-work-related TKAs.

Workers had to be between 6 and 12 months post-TKA, have physical/manual jobs and currently employed. Their rehabilitation professionals and workplace representatives (employer and/or union) were also recruited, based on the work disability paradigm.

Semi-structured interviews, questionnaires on pain, physical work demands (workers only), and observation of the work activities of those workers back at work were used. Cases were compared and categorized for worker-perceived levels of difficulty in returning to or staying at work: little or no difficulty (n = 8); some difficulty (n = 5); not back at work due to excessive difficulty with their knee (n = 4).

A total of 17 cases were constituted. In only one case, the worker benefitted from an interdisciplinary work rehabilitation approach. Results highlight the interplay among these factors: (1) the workers' perceptions of their residual symptoms and ability to manage them, (2) the interaction between work adjustments and tools offered by the employers and the workers' own strategies, and (3) perceptions of the workers' physical capacities.

Workers' who face high levels of work demands/difficulties and who have limited access to work adjustments and tools should be referred for work rehabilitation.

A comparison of prefabricated and custom made resting hand splints for individuals with cervical spinal cord injury: A randomized controlled trial.

Clinical Rehabilitation

To compare prefabricated and custom resting hand splints and establish the feasibility of splinting research for larger scale trials.

A Randomized controlled pilot study where the randomization unit was each hand, rather than each individual.

Thirty-two-bed spinal cord injury and multi-trauma rehabilitation unit in an urban academic rehabilitation center.

Thirty-six hands from 19 individuals with cervical spinal cord injury were enrolled during their acute rehabilitation stay.

Each eligible hand was randomized to receive a custom or prefabricated resting hand splint for night use.

The Graded Redefined Assessment of Strength, Sensation and Prehension (GRASSP) was completed at both admission and discharge, and a structured interview was completed at discharge.

No difference existed in GRASSP outcomes or user preference between custom and prefabricated resting hand splints. Mann-Whitney tests indicated that there was no significant difference in qualitative prehension scores (U = 141, P = 0.522) nor quantitative prehension scores (U = 135, P = 0.382) between groups. Adherence to the splinting program was high (18 out of 19 participants), and no adverse effects occurred. Four themes emerged from the participant comments: the participants felt splints were helpful in their recovery; they found it challenging to direct their caregivers to help with the splints; they needed to take ownership for managing their splints; and they wished they received more education on splint rationale.

There was no obvious difference in outcome or user preference between prefabricated and custom resting hand splints.

Understanding Traumatic Brain Injury in Females: A State-of-the-Art Summary and Future Directions.

Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation

In this report, we identify existing issues and challenges related to research on traumatic brain injury (TBI) in females and provide future direct...

Dose-related effects of radial extracorporeal shock wave therapy for knee osteoarthritis: A randomized controlled trial.

Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine

To assess the dose-related effects of radial extracorporeal shock wave therapy on pain alleviation in knee osteoarthritis.

With the use of a 2 × 2 factorial randomized controlled design, 89 patients diagnosed with knee osteoarthritis were assigned to 1 of 4 treatment groups, which varied in terms of shock intensity (0.12 mJ/mm2, lower density, or 0.24 mJ/mm2, higher density) and shock number (2,000 impulses or 4,000 impulses), or to a placebo control. Each group received 4 sessions of radial extracorporeal shock wave therapy, one week apart. The primary outcome was pain intensity measured on a visual analogue scale, and the secondary outcome was the Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) score. Assessments were performed at baseline, after each session, and at 4-week follow-up.

Two-way repeated-measures analysis of variance revealed a significant effect on the Pain score for intensity (p < 0.001), with no effect for number (p = 0.467) or the intensity-number interaction (p = 0.536). Similar results were obtained for the WOMAC scores, except for an association between number and WOMAC score (p = 0.036). At the 4-week follow-up, all treatment groups showed greater reductions in the Pain and WOMAC scores than the control group. In addition, scores decreased more at higher densities of shock intensity than at lower densities, while there was no significant difference between the 2,000- and 4,000-shock conditions.

Moderate-intensity radial extracorporeal shock wave therapy was effective, and a higher density might be more efficacious in alleviating pain in knee osteoarthritis.

Optimal duration of stretching exercise in patients with chronic myofascial pain syndrome: A randomized controlled trial.

Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine

To explore the effect of variable durations of stretching on neural function, pain, and algometric pressure in patients with chronic myofascial pain syndrome.

The 3 experimental groups received different durations of cervical spine stretching: 15, 30 or 60 s. The control group did not stretch. Primary outcome measures included peak-to-peak somatosensory-evoked potential for dermatomes C6, C7 and C8. Secondary outcome measures included central somatosensory conduction time (N13-N20), pain intensity, and pressure-pain threshold algometric measurements. All outcome measures were assessed immediately after and 2 h after the treatment session.

Post hoc analysis indicated that stretching for 60 s significantly decreased the dermatomal amplitude for C6, C7 and C8 (p < 0.001) and significantly increased the central conduction time, indicating negative effect (p < 0.001). Stretching for 30 and 60 s resulted in greater improvement in pain intensity and algometric pressure than stretching for 15 s or no stretch (control) < 0.001.

Stretching cervical muscles involved in chronic myofascial pain syndrome for 30 s was optimal in achieving stretching benefits and minimizing the negative effects on the neural function of the involved nerve roots and central nervous system.