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Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 1994 Jan;75(1):36-9.

Rehabilitation outcome in children after treatment of primary brain tumor.

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Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Northwestern University Medical School, Chicago, IL.


Functional outcome studies after treatment of primary brain tumors in children are lacking. This study of 30 children, ages 3 to 20 years (x 10.8 yrs) was aimed at documenting the effects of rehabilitation on functional outcome after treatment of primary brain tumors. Functional measurements were documented by a modified functional independence measure for children (WeeFIM). The paired t-test, Wilcoxon test, chi 2 analysis, and Friedman test were used to assess significance of data. Statistically significant improvements were documented from admission to discharge, and discharge to follow-up in total WeeFIM scores (p = 0.001 and p = 0.0001) and specifically in the subgroups of self care, mobility, and locomotion. Though no significant improvement was noted in sphincter control from admission to discharge (p = 0.15), significant gains were seen at follow-up (p = 0.006). Borderline improvements at discharge in communication (p = 0.054) and social cognition (p = 0.051) became significant at follow-up (p = 0.01 and p = 0.004). At admission, 7 patients (23%) were independent in self care, 5 (17%) in mobility and 1 (3%) in locomotion compared with 18 (60%), 20 (67%), and 15 (50%) respectively at discharge. At follow-up there was further improvement with 95% independent in self care, 100% in mobility and 70% in locomotion. This study affirms the beneficial effect of comprehensive rehabilitation on functional outcome in children with residual disabilities after treatment of their primary brain tumors.

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