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The effect of hippotherapy on spasticity and on mental well-being of persons with spinal cord injury.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES

To determine the effect of hippotherapy on spasticity and on mental well-being of persons with spinal cord injury (SCI), and to compare it with the effects of other interventions.

DESIGN

Crossover trial with 4 conditions.

SETTING

Swiss paraplegic center.

PARTICIPANTS

A volunteer sample of 12 people with spastic SCI (American Spinal Injury Association grade A or B).

INTERVENTIONS

Hippotherapy, sitting astride a Bobath roll, and sitting on a stool with rocking seat. Each session lasted 25 minutes and was conducted twice weekly for 4 weeks; the control condition was spasticity measurement without intervention.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES

Clinical rating by a blinded examiner of movement-provoked muscle resistance, using the Ashworth Scale; self-rating of spasticity by subjects on a visual analog scale (VAS); and mental well-being evaluated with the self-rated well-being scale Befindlichkeits-Skala of von Zerssen. Assessments were performed immediately after intervention sessions (short-term effect); data from the assessments were analyzed 3 to 4 days after the sessions to calculate the long-term effect.

RESULTS

By analyzing the clinically rated spasticity, only the effect of hippotherapy reached significance compared with the control condition (without intervention); median differences in the Ashworth scores' sum before and after hippotherapy sessions ranged between -8.0 and +0.5. There was a significant difference between the spasticity-reducing effect of hippotherapy and the other 2 interventions in self-rated spasticity by VAS; median differences of the VAS before and after hippotherapy sessions ranged between -4.6 and +0.05cm. There were no long-term effects on spasticity. Immediate improvements in the subjects' mental well-being were detected only after hippotherapy (P=.048).

CONCLUSIONS

Hippotherapy is more efficient than sitting astride a Bobath roll or on a rocking seat in reducing spasticity temporarily. Hippotherapy had a positive short-term effect on subjects' mental well-being.

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  • Publisher Full Text
  • Authors+Show Affiliations

    ,

    Swiss Paraplegic Centre, Nottwil, Switzerland. helga.lechner@paranet.ch

    , ,

    Source

    MeSH

    Adult
    Aged
    Animals
    Cross-Over Studies
    Female
    Horses
    Humans
    Male
    Mental Health
    Middle Aged
    Paraparesis, Spastic
    Physical Therapy Modalities
    Spinal Cord Injuries

    Pub Type(s)

    Journal Article
    Randomized Controlled Trial
    Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

    Language

    eng

    PubMed ID

    17908564

    Citation

    Lechner, Helga E., et al. "The Effect of Hippotherapy On Spasticity and On Mental Well-being of Persons With Spinal Cord Injury." Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, vol. 88, no. 10, 2007, pp. 1241-8.
    Lechner HE, Kakebeeke TH, Hegemann D, et al. The effect of hippotherapy on spasticity and on mental well-being of persons with spinal cord injury. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2007;88(10):1241-8.
    Lechner, H. E., Kakebeeke, T. H., Hegemann, D., & Baumberger, M. (2007). The effect of hippotherapy on spasticity and on mental well-being of persons with spinal cord injury. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 88(10), pp. 1241-8.
    Lechner HE, et al. The Effect of Hippotherapy On Spasticity and On Mental Well-being of Persons With Spinal Cord Injury. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2007;88(10):1241-8. PubMed PMID: 17908564.
    * Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
    TY - JOUR T1 - The effect of hippotherapy on spasticity and on mental well-being of persons with spinal cord injury. AU - Lechner,Helga E, AU - Kakebeeke,Tanja H, AU - Hegemann,Dörte, AU - Baumberger,Michael, PY - 2007/10/3/pubmed PY - 2007/11/9/medline PY - 2007/10/3/entrez SP - 1241 EP - 8 JF - Archives of physical medicine and rehabilitation JO - Arch Phys Med Rehabil VL - 88 IS - 10 N2 - OBJECTIVES: To determine the effect of hippotherapy on spasticity and on mental well-being of persons with spinal cord injury (SCI), and to compare it with the effects of other interventions. DESIGN: Crossover trial with 4 conditions. SETTING: Swiss paraplegic center. PARTICIPANTS: A volunteer sample of 12 people with spastic SCI (American Spinal Injury Association grade A or B). INTERVENTIONS: Hippotherapy, sitting astride a Bobath roll, and sitting on a stool with rocking seat. Each session lasted 25 minutes and was conducted twice weekly for 4 weeks; the control condition was spasticity measurement without intervention. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Clinical rating by a blinded examiner of movement-provoked muscle resistance, using the Ashworth Scale; self-rating of spasticity by subjects on a visual analog scale (VAS); and mental well-being evaluated with the self-rated well-being scale Befindlichkeits-Skala of von Zerssen. Assessments were performed immediately after intervention sessions (short-term effect); data from the assessments were analyzed 3 to 4 days after the sessions to calculate the long-term effect. RESULTS: By analyzing the clinically rated spasticity, only the effect of hippotherapy reached significance compared with the control condition (without intervention); median differences in the Ashworth scores' sum before and after hippotherapy sessions ranged between -8.0 and +0.5. There was a significant difference between the spasticity-reducing effect of hippotherapy and the other 2 interventions in self-rated spasticity by VAS; median differences of the VAS before and after hippotherapy sessions ranged between -4.6 and +0.05cm. There were no long-term effects on spasticity. Immediate improvements in the subjects' mental well-being were detected only after hippotherapy (P=.048). CONCLUSIONS: Hippotherapy is more efficient than sitting astride a Bobath roll or on a rocking seat in reducing spasticity temporarily. Hippotherapy had a positive short-term effect on subjects' mental well-being. SN - 0003-9993 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/17908564/The_effect_of_hippotherapy_on_spasticity_and_on_mental_well_being_of_persons_with_spinal_cord_injury_ L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0003-9993(07)01284-1 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -