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Am Fam Physician. 2003 Apr 15;67(8):1717-24.

Ambulatory devices for chronic gait disorders in the elderly.

Author information

1
SunDance Rehabilitation Corporation, Tucson, Arizona, USA. fuanhook@aol.com

Abstract

Gait disorders in the elderly are common and in most cases cannot be treated medically or surgically. Therefore, treatment often relies on ambulatory devices such as canes, crutches, and walkers. Before selecting a device, the patient should be evaluated to define whether one or both upper extremities are required to achieve balance or bear weight. Patients requiring only one upper extremity can use a cane, while patients requiring both upper extremities are best served by forearm crutches or walkers. The patient's need to bear weight through the device will help the physician choose a specific device. When measuring the device, anatomic landmarks and the angle of the elbow must be taken into consideration. Because time often is limited during a routine office visit, a physical therapist often can provide further training for patients learning to use such a device.

PMID:
12725450
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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