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NeuroRehabilitation. 2007;22(4):261-5.

A comparison of computerized dynamic posturography therapy to standard balance physical therapy in individuals with Parkinson's disease: a pilot study.

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  • 1Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Virginia Commonwealth University, Medical College of Virginia Campus, Richmond, VA, USA.


Postural instability is a common impairment in idiopathic Parkinson's disease (PD). People with PD are prone to balance and walking difficulties. This study analyzed the feasibility of a prospective investigation of Computerized Dynamic Posturography (CDP) and standard Physical Therapy (PT) treatments in individuals with mild-moderate PD. Treatment took place at two sites: 1) CDP therapy at the Southeast Parkinson's Disease Research Education and Clinical Center (PADRECC) within a Veterans Affairs Medical Center and 2) standard physical therapy at a community outpatient rehabilitation center. Final analysis compared 15 patients randomly assigned for therapy to either the CDP or PT treatments. Therapy time was eight weeks (four weeks of CPD or PT followed by home therapy for four weeks). The CDP therapy included gradually intensified closed chain and mobility training. Standard PT consisted of upright, mat, and theraball exercises and gait training. The home exercise phase was identical for both groups. The pilot data demonstrated treatment was tolerated by 68 percent of the sample despite the occurrence of a progressive neurological condition and medical comorbidities. While results failed to reveal any differences between treatment groups, both groups demonstrated improvement on selected outcome measures. An expanded prospective study with methodological improvements appears warranted.

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