Effect of task-oriented exercise training program on the functional performance of children with cerebral palsy
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Department of Physiotherapy, Faculty of Allied Health Sciences, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria
Department of Physiotherapy, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria
Submission date: 2020-01-19
Acceptance date: 2020-06-03
Publication date: 2021-08-21
Physiother Quart. 2021;29(3):40-48
To evaluate the effects of task-oriented exercise training program (TOET) on the functional performance (mobility and walking efficiency) of children with cerebral palsy (CP).

Overall, 46 children with CP were recruited from outpatient units of the physiotherapy clinics of Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Murtala Mohammed Specialist Hospital, and a school for children with disabilities. They were randomly assigned to the TOET group (n = 23) and the control group (CG) (n = 23). Children in CG practised conventional physiotherapy. Each group trained twice weekly for 12 weeks. Mobility and walking efficiency were assessed with a mobility questionnaire and 10-meter walk test, respectively, at baseline, after 6th and 12th weeks, and after 6 weeks of follow-up. Data were analysed with repeated measures ANOVA, t-test, Mann-Whitney U test, and Friedman’s test, with α < 0.05.

A total of 39 children with CP completed the study, 19 in CG and 20 in TOET group. The between-group scores of mobility (TOET: 69.15 ± 17.32; CG: 67.03 ± 10.49) and walking efficiency (TOET: 0.63 ± 0.2 m/s; CG: 0.63 ± 0.19 m/s) were not different at baseline and at the 6th week (p > 0.05). At the 12th week, there were significant between-group differences in mobility (TOET: 86.16 ± 7.20; CG: 71.09 ± 13.58) and walking efficiency (TOET: 1.00 ± 0.29 m/s; CG: 0.78 ± 0.28 m/s) (p < 0.05). The within-group scores of walking efficiency and mobility increased in both TOET and CG (p < 0.005 for both comparisons).

TOET is an effective intervention to improve functional performance of children with CP.

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