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J Phys Ther Sci. 2014 Apr;26(4):539-42. doi: 10.1589/jpts.26.539. Epub 2014 Apr 23.

Can walking ability enhance the effectiveness of breathing exercise in children with spastic cerebral palsy?

Author information

1
Department of Physical Therapy, Graduate School of Rehabilitation Science, Daegu University, Republic of Korea.
2
Department of Physical Therapy, College of Rehabilitation Science, Daegu University, Republic of Korea.

Abstract

[Purpose] The purpose of this study was to compare differences in respiratory pressure and pulmonary function and the effectiveness of respiratory feedback training according to walking ability in children with cerebral palsy (CP). [Subjects and Methods] Twenty-three children with spastic CP were enrolled in the final analysis and were divided into an independent walking group (n=12) and non-independent walking group. All children received respiratory feedback training for four weeks. Before and after the training, respiratory muscle strength was measured and a pulmonary function test was performed. [Results] Comparison of respiratory pressure and pulmonary function test results between the two revealed that the independent walking group had significantly higher respiratory function than the other group in all variables except peak expiratory flow. In comparison of changes in respiratory function between the two groups, the independent walking group showed significantly higher improvement of respiratory function in terms of maximal inspiratory pressure, maximal expiratory pressure, and forced vital capacity. [Conclusion] These findings showed that children with independent walking ability had better respiratory muscle strength and pulmonary function compared with children without independent walking ability. Understanding respiratory function and the effectiveness of respiratory training according to walking ability will be valuable clinical information for respiratory assessment and therapy in children with CP.

KEYWORDS:

Cerebral palsy; Respiratory function; Walking ability

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