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Hum Mov Sci. 2003 Nov;22(4-5):461-78.

Motor and functional skills of children with developmental coordination disorder: a pilot investigation of measurement issues.

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Department of Occupational Therapy, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, The University of Queensland, Qld 4072 Brisbane, Australia.


This paper reports on the motor and functional outcomes of 20 children with developmental coordination disorder (DCD) aged 4-8 years consecutively referred to a pediatric physiotherapy service. Children with a Movement ABC (M-ABC) score less than the 15th percentile, and with no concurrent medical, sensory, physical, intellectual or neurological impairments, were recruited. The Motor Assessment Outcomes Model (MAOM) [Coster and Haley, Infants and Young Children 4 (1992) 11] provided the theoretical base for measurement selection, and preliminary findings at the activities and participation levels of the model are reported in this article. Children with DCD performed at the lower end of the normal range on the Peabody Developmental Motor Scales (fine motor total score) (M=85.65, SD=12.23). Performance on the Visual Motor Integration Test (VMI) standard scores was within the average range (M=96.15, SD=10.69). Videotaped observations of the children's writing and cutting indicated that 29% were left-handed and that a large proportion of all children (31%) utilized unusual pencil grasp patterns and immature prehension of scissors. Measurement at the participation level involved use of the Pictorial Scale of Perceived Competence and Social Acceptance (PCSA) and Pediatric Evaluation of Disability Inventory (PEDI). Overall, these young children rated themselves towards the more competent and accepted end of the PCSA over the dimensions of physical and cognitive competence and peer and maternal acceptance. The PEDI revealed generally average performance on social (M=49.98, SD=16.62) and mobility function (M=54.71, SD=3.99), however, self-care function was below the average range for age (M=38.01, SD=12.19). The utility of the MAOM as a framework for comprehensive measurement of functional and motor outcomes of DCD in young children is discussed.

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