Pediatric Physical Therapy

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Pediatric Physical Therapy:
doi: 10.1097/PEP.0b013e3181dbd806
Research Article

Functional Electrical Stimulation to Lower Limb Muscles After Botox in Children With Cerebral Palsy

Seifart, Anja MSc; Unger, Marianne MSc; Burger, Marlett MSc

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Abstract

Purpose: This study examined the effect of lower limb functional electrical stimulation (FES) after botulinum toxin injection in children with cerebral palsy on self-selected walking speed, plantar flexor and dorsiflexor muscle strength, and an optimal time frame for initiating FES after the injection.

Methods: Five subjects participated in a single-subject design. All subjects received a single botulinum toxin injection into the calf muscle, followed by a 4-week FES home program. Three subjects followed the protocol as prescribed; 2 subjects received no FES.

Results: FES after botulinum toxin increased isometric plantar flexor muscle strength, but did not produce changes in self-selected walking speeds or isometric dorsiflexor strength. A 32-day interval between botulinum toxin and the start of FES was most effective.

Conclusions and Recommendations for Clinical Practice: FES after botulinum toxin seems to be effective in improving some gait variables, although further research is needed for substantiation.

© 2010 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.

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