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Pediatr Phys Ther. 2003 Fall;15(3):167-75.

Effects of lower extremity passive stretching: pilot study of children and youth with severe limitations in self-mobility.

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1
Research Center for Children with Special Health Care Needs, Franciscan Children's Hospital and Rehabilitation Center, Boston, MA 02135, USA. mfragala@bu.edu

Abstract

PURPOSE:

The purpose of this pilot study was to investigate changes in passive range of motion (PROM) of children with severe limitations in self-mobility during periods of physical therapy intervention and naturally occurring periods of no intervention (school vacations).

METHODS:

A multiple-case time-series design was used to monitor hip and knee PROM over a seven-month period for seven students aged four to 18 years receiving physical therapy in a school setting. PROM measurements were graphed and the Wilcoxon signed rank test was used to evaluate the PROM changes during intervention and nonintervention phases for each individual student and for the students as a group.

RESULTS:

When PROM changes were pooled for all subjects and all joint motions, the Wilcoxon signed rank test revealed a significant decrease in PROM only after the first nonintervention phase. Significant decreases in PROM were observed in only two of the students after the first nonintervention phase.

CONCLUSION:

Children and youth with severe limitations in self-mobility may lose PROM during nonintervention periods lasting more than five weeks.

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