Aim: To assess the influence of an intensive combined constraint and bimanual upper extremity (UE) training program using a variety of modalities including the fitness room and pool, on UE functions as well as the effects of the program on gait parameters among children with hemiparetic cerebral palsy. Methods: Ten children ages 6-10 years participated in the program for 2 weeks, 5 days per week for 6 hr each day. Data from the Assisting Hand Assessment (AHA) for bimanual function, the Jebsen-Taylor Test of Hand Function (JTTHF) for unimanual function, the six-minute walk test (6MWT), and the temporal-spatial aspects of gait using the GAITRite walkway were collected prior to, immediately post and 3-months post-intervention. Results: A significant improvement was noted in both unimanual as well as bimanual UE performance; A significant improvement in the 6MWT was noted, from a median of 442 meter [range: 294-558] at baseline to 466 [432-592] post intervention and 528 [425-609] after 3 months (p =.03). Conclusion: Combining intensive practice in a variety of modalities, although targeting to the UE is associated with substantial improvement both in the upper as well as in the lower extremity function.
- cerebral palsy