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Neurology. 2004 Sep 28;63(6):1045-52.

ABILHAND-Kids: a measure of manual ability in children with cerebral palsy.

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Laboratory of Rehabilitation and Physical Medicine, Université catholique de Louvain, Brussels, Belgium.



To develop a clinical tool for measuring manual ability (ABILHAND-Kids) in children with cerebral palsy (CP) using the Rasch measurement model.


The authors developed a 74-item questionnaire based on existing scales and experts' advice. The questionnaire was submitted to 113 children with CP (59% boys; mean age, 10 years) without major intellectual deficits (IQ > 60) and to their parents, and resubmitted to both groups after 1 month. The children's and parents' responses were analyzed separately with the WINSTEPS Rasch software to select items presenting an ordered rating scale, sharing the same discrimination, and fitting a unidimensional scale.


The final ABILHAND-Kids scale consisted of 21 mostly bimanual items rated by the parents. The parents reported a finer perception of their children's ability than the children themselves, leading to a wider range of measurement, a higher reliability (R = 0.94), and a good reproducibility over time (R = 0.91). The item difficulty hierarchy was consistent between the parents and the experts. The ABILHAND-kids measures are significantly related to school education, type of CP, and gross motor function.


ABILHAND-Kids is a functional scale specifically developed to measure manual ability in children with CP providing guidelines for goal setting in treatment planning. Its range and measurement precision are appropriate for clinical practice.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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