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Use of Awareness Through Movement Improves Balance and Balance Confidence in People with Multiple Sclerosis: A Randomized Controlled Study.

Stephens, James PT, PhD; DuShuttle, Dominique MS, PT; Hatcher, Carla MS, PT; Shmunes, Jenifer MS, PT; Slaninka, Christine MS, PT
Neurology Report: 2001
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: This study examined the effectiveness of a structured, group motor learning process, Awareness Through Movement (ATM), on balance, balance confidence, and self-efficacy. Twelve people with multiple sclerosis were randomly assigned to either ATM or control groups. The ATM group participated in 8 classes, 2 to 4 hours each while the control group participated in educational sessions, over 10 weeks. Six outcome measures were used: the Basic Balance Master modified Clinical Test of Sensory Interaction in Balance (mCTSIB) and Limits of Stability tests; the Activities-specific Balance Confidence Scale; a number of prospective falls; Equiscale; and the Multiple Sclerosis Self-Efficacy Scale. The ATM group exhibited significantly improved mCTSIB scores indicating an average center of pressure position closer to theoretical center, had significantly fewer abnormal mCTSIB tests, and demonstrated improved balance confidence compared to controls. There was a trend toward improvement in all other measures in the ATM group compared to controls. These results suggest that this type of motor learning intervention can be effective in improving a variety of physical and psychological parameters related to balance and postural control.

(C) 2001 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.