Effectiveness of physical therapy interventions for children with cerebral palsy: a systematic review.

Anttila H, Autti-Ramo I, Suoranta J, Makela M, Malmivaara A

The objective of this systematic review was to assess the effectiveness of physical therapy (PT) interventions on functioning in children with cerebral palsy (CP). Twenty-two trials were identified, eight intervention categories were distinguished and four trials were of high methodological quality. Moderate evidence of effectiveness was established for two intervention categories: effectiveness of upper extremity treatments on attained goals and active supination, and of prehensile hand treatment and neurodevelopmental therapy (NDT) or NDT twice a week on developmental status, and of constraint-induced therapy on amount and quality of hand use. Moderate evidence of ineffectiveness was found of strength training on walking speed and stride length. Conflicting evidence was found for strength training on gross motor function. For the other intervention categories the evidence was limited due to low methodological quality and the statistically insignificant results of the studies.

BioMed Central Pediatrics, 2008, 8(1), 14

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