Out-patient rehabilitation programme for spinal cord injured patients: Evaluation of the results on motor FIM score

Luz Helena Lugo,  Fabio Salinas, Héctor Iván García

The aim of this study was to evaluate an out-patient attention programme based on a short in-patient phase (average 13.5 days) followed by an out-patient interdisciplinary rehabilitation programme (lasting 18 months). 42 patients participated in the prospective quasi-experimental before-and-after study. The main outcome measure was the Functional Independence Measurement (FIM) and secondary outcomes were the American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) motor scores and morbidity. The intervention was a two-phase goal-based interdisciplinary programme which consisted of a hospital and an ambulatory phase. After an evaluation upon admission to hospital, follow-up was carried out 1, 3, 6, 12 and 18 months later. The authors found that motor FIM scores progressively increased from 25/91 up to 69/91. Pain was the most frequent complication, in 80% of patients by the third month. Urinary and fecal continence also improved during follow-up (74% at 18 months). The authors concluded that good functional evolution of SCI patients and low morbidity can be obtained with a low-cost out-patient rehabilitation programme.

Disability and Rehabilitation, 2007, 29 (11&12), 873-881

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