Physical rehabilitation for critical illness myopathy and neuropathy

Intensive care unit (ICU) acquired or generalised weakness as a result of critical illness myopathy (CIM) and polyneuropathy (CIP) are major causes of chronically impaired motor function that can affect activities of daily living and quality of life. Physical rehabilitation of those affected could assist in improving activities of daily living. The primary objective was to assess the effects of physical rehabilitation therapies and interventions for people with CIP and CIM in improving activities of daily living such as walking, bathing, dressing and eating. Secondary objectives were to assess effects on muscle strength and quality of life, and to assess adverse effects of physical rehabilitation. The search strategy retrieved 3587 references. After examination of titles and abstracts, we retrieved the full text of 24 potentially relevant studies. None of these studies met the inclusion criteria of our review. No data were suitable to be included in a meta-analysis.

There are no published RCTs or quasi-RCTs that examine whether physical rehabilitation interventions are beneficial to activities of daily living for people with CIP and CIM. Large RCTs, which are feasible, need to be conducted to examine the role of physical rehabilitation interventions for people with CIP and CIM.