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Disabil Rehabil Assist Technol. 2013 Nov;8(6):502-6. doi: 10.3109/17483107.2013.763294. Epub 2013 Feb 1.

Construction of an artifact to the suitability of sitting posture in children with cerebral palsy and multiple disabilities.

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  • 1Department of Physical Therapy, School of Health and Biosciences, Pontifical Catholic University of ParanĂ¡ , Curitiba , Brazil.



Cerebral palsy (CP) may involve muscle imbalance between the spastic muscles and their antagonists leading to weak postural changes, decreased mobility and chest deformities.


To improve postural condition in children with CP using physiotherapy and assistive technology (AT).


Five children with CP and multiple disabilities and postural changes like scoliosis were included in this study. AT involved the use of low-cost custom made cushion seat and backrest for the wheelchairs to achieve 90° of trunk flexion. This was performed in 10 sessions after the beginning of physiotherapy. As evaluation-intervention tool, photographs were taken at the beginning and end of each session, and then analyzed using software for postural assessment (SAPO).


Twenty-five per cent of the participants had an improvement of trunk angulations at the end of the treatment program.


The use of AT with physiotherapy treatment proved efficient in the postural alignment of children with CP children in a wheelchair.


Wheelchairs are manufactured in standard size, which makes difficult the adaptation of individuals with peculiar postures. Even the most sophisticated, with adjustments and special accessories, not always allow adjustments to shape up properly to deformities in children with cerebral palsy. It is hoped that this research will be useful in order to show rehabilitation professionals the ability to minimize the difficulties of keeping children with cerebral palsy and multiple disabilities properly seated in the wheelchair, facilitating posture, movement, breathing and swallowing. The construction of these artifacts has the advantage of being low cost, and must pass through stages of adequacy and modeling in order to replace the seat and side of the wheelchair.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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