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PM R. 2017 Sep;9(9):839-846. doi: 10.1016/j.pmrj.2016.12.010. Epub 2017 Jan 16.

A Comparison of Locomotor Therapy Interventions: Partial-Body Weight-Supported Treadmill, Lokomat, and G-EO Training in People With Traumatic Brain Injury.

Author information

1
MossRehab Gait and Motion Analysis Laboratory, 60 Township Line Rd, Elkins Park, PA 19027(∗). Electronic address: aesquena@einstein.edu.
2
MossRehab Gait and Motion Analysis Laboratory, Elkins Park, PA(†).
3
MossRehab Gait and Motion Analysis Laboratory, Elkins Park, PA(‡).
4
MossRehab Gait and Motion Analysis Laboratory, Elkins Park, PA(§).
5
MossRehab Gait and Motion Analysis Laboratory, Elkins Park, PA(¶).
6
MossRehab Gait and Motion Analysis Laboratory, Elkins Park, PA(#).

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Literature in the application of gait training techniques in persons with traumatic brain injury (TBI) is limited. Current techniques require multiple staff and are physically demanding. The use of a robotic locomotor training may provide improved training capacity for this population.

OBJECTIVE:

To examine the impact of 3 different modes of locomotor therapy on gait velocity and spatiotemporal symmetry using an end effector robot (G-EO); a robotic exoskeleton (Lokomat), and manual assisted partial-body weight-supported treadmill training (PBWSTT) in participants with traumatic brain injury.

DESIGN:

Randomized, prospective study.

SETTING:

Tertiary rehabilitation hospital.

PARTICIPANTS:

A total of 22 individuals with ≥12 months chronic TBI with hemiparetic pattern able to walk overground without assistance at velocities between 0.2 and 0.6 m/s.

INTERVENTION:

Eighteen sessions of 45 minutes of assigned locomotor training.

OUTCOME MEASURES:

Overground walking self-selected velocity (SSV), maximal velocity (MV), spatiotemporal asymmetry ratio, 6-Minute Walk Test (6MWT), and mobility domain of Stroke Impact Scale (MSIS).

RESULTS:

Severity in walking dysfunction was similar across groups as determined by walking velocity data. At baseline, participants in the Lokomat group had a baseline velocity that was slightly slower compared with the other groups. Training elicited a statistically significant median increase in SSV for all groups compared with pretraining (Lokomat, P = .04; G-EO, P = .03; and PBWSTT, P = .02) and MV excluding the G-EO group (Lokomat, P = .04; PBWSTT, P = .03 and G-EO, P = .15). There were no pre-post significant differences in swing time, stance time, and step length asymmetry ratios at SSV or MV for any of the interventions. Mean rank in the change of SSV and MV was not statistically significantly different between groups. Participants in the G-EO and PBWSTT groups significantly improved their 6MWT posttraining (P = .04 and .03, respectively). The MSIS significantly improved only for the Lokomat group (P = .04 and .03). The data did not elicit between-groups significant differences for 6MWT and MSIS. There was less use of staff for Lokomat than G-EO.

CONCLUSIONS:

Locomotor therapy using G-EO, Lokomat, or PBWSTT in individuals with chronic TBI increased SSV and MV without significant changes in gait symmetry. Staffing needed for therapy provision was the least for the Lokomat. A larger study may further elucidate changes in gait symmetry and other training parameters.

LEVEL OF EVIDENCE:

II.

PMID:
28093370
DOI:
10.1016/j.pmrj.2016.12.010
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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