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Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol. 2009 May;4(3):198-207. doi: 10.1080/17483100802543205.

Participation in community-based activities of daily living: comparison of a pushrim-activated, power-assisted wheelchair and a power wheelchair.

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  • 1School of Medical Rehabilitation, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba.



The purpose of this study was to evaluate pushrim-activated, power-assisted wheelchair (PPW) performance among dual-users in their natural environment to determine whether the PPW would serve as a satisfactory alternative to a power wheelchair for community-based activities.


A concurrent mixed methods research design using a cross-over trial was used. The outcome measures used were number of hours reported using the different wheelchairs, Quebec User Evaluation of Satisfaction with assistive Technology (QUEST), Functioning Everyday with a Wheelchair (FEW), Psychosocial Impact of Assistive Devices Scale (PIADS) and Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM).


The number of hours spent participating in self-identified activities was not significantly different. Only the Self-Esteem subscale of the PIADS identified a statistically significant difference between the PPW and power wheelchair conditions (p = 0.016). A clinically important difference for Performance and Satisfaction was suggested by the COPM, in favour of the power wheelchair.


Additional knowledge was gained about the benefits of PPW technology. Participants were able to continue participating independently in their self-identified community activities using the PPW, and identified comparable ratings of satisfaction and performance with the PPW and the power wheelchair. For some individuals requiring power mobility, the PPW may provide an alternative to the power wheelchair.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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