Effect of Seated Position on Upper-Extremity Access to Augmentative Communication for Children with Cerebral Palsy: Preliminary InvestigationBy Costigan, F. Aileen; Light, Janice; American Journal of Occupational Therapy, Vol. 64, No. 4, pp. 596-604
Publication Date: July/August 2010
Study explored the effect of seated position on upper extremity access to augmentative communication for a child with cerebral palsy (CP). An ABAB design was used with a 5-year-old male participant with CP. Accuracy and speed of selection of targets on a speech-generating device were compared in participant’s typical position and in an intervention position. While participant’s baseline position did not adhere to the conventions of functional seating, the intervention position resulted in more neutral pelvic positioning, heels and balls of the feet being in consistent contact with the foot plate, and the upper body being vertically aligned in the sagittal and frontal planes with consistent lumbar support. The intervention position was achieved through simple modifications to participant’s typical seating. The mean frequency of accurate selection was higher in the B phases when participant was in the intervention position than in the A phases when he was in the baseline position. The data were stable in each phase, suggesting that changes could be attributed to the effect of seated position. These results provide preliminary empirical evidence of the positive effects of functional seating on access to augmentative communication for children with CP. Study limitations and implications for future research are discussed.
Published by: American Occupational Therapy Association, Inc. (AOTA) (Website:http://www.aota.org)