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Evaluation of the functional effects of a course of Bobath therapy in children with cerebral palsy: a preliminary study

  • Virginia Knox (a1) and Andrew Lloyd Evans (a2)

Abstract

This study aimed to evaluate functional effects of Bobath therapy in children with cerebral palsy (CP). Fifteen children with a diagnosis of CP were recruited (9 males, 6 females; mean age 7 years 4 months, SD 2 years 8 months; age range 2 to 12 years). Types of motor disorder were as follows: spastic quadriplegia (n=9); spastic diplegia (n=4); athetoid quadriplegia (n=1), and ataxia (n=1). Participants were distributed across the following Gross Motor Function Classification levels: level I, n=1; level II, n=4; level III, n=5; level IV, n=4; and level V, n=1. Children awaiting orthopaedic intervention were excluded. A repeated measures design was used with participants tested with the Gross Motor Function Measure (GMFM) and Pediatric Evaluation of Disability Inventory (PEDI) at 6-weekly intervals (baseline, before and after Bobath therapy, and follow-up). As the data were of ordinal type, non-parametric statistics were used, i.e. Wilcoxon's test. Participants showed a significant improvement in scores in the following areas following Bobath therapy compared with the periods before and after Bobath therapy: GMFM total score (p=0.009); GMFM goal total (p=0.001); PEDI self care skills (p=0.036); and PEDI caregiver assistance total score (p=0.012). This demonstrates that in this population, gains were made in motor function and self care following a course of Bobath therapy.

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Bobath Centre, 250 East End Road, London N2 8AU, UK. E-mail: info@bobathlondon.co.uk

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Evaluation of the functional effects of a course of Bobath therapy in children with cerebral palsy: a preliminary study

  • Virginia Knox (a1) and Andrew Lloyd Evans (a2)

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