Date of Paper/Work
Type of Paper/Work
Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)
David D. Chapman
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: We know little about the leg movements and kicks of infants with SB who have their spinal lesion repaired in-utero. Nor do we know how sensitive they are to the movement context in which they are placed. The purpose of this pilot study was to describe how often infants with SB who have had their spinal lesion repaired pre-natally move their legs and kick when they are in different postures.
SUBJECTS: Four infants with lumbar spina bifida. Two had pre-natal spinal surgery.
METHODS AND MATERIALS: Each infant was videotaped once a month for four months when they were supine and seated in a specially designed adjustable infant seat. Frame by frame behavior coding was used to identify leg movements and kicks. Anthropometric measures were collected to determine if these traits were related to how often they moved their legs or kicked.
ANALYSES: Due to the small sample size (n=4) descriptive statistics were used to verify trends in the number of leg movements and kicks generated in each position at each age. Correlations were calculated between the anthropometric measures and frequency of leg movements and kicks.
RESULTS: All four infants produced similar numbers of leg movements and kicks when supine and markedly increased how often they moved their legs and kicked when seated. The two infants who had in-utero surgery demonstrated more leg movements or kicks in each seated position at each age compared to the infants who had post-natal spinal surgery. Only thigh skinfold and plantarflexion were significantly correlated with leg movements or kicks (p=.05).
CONCLUSIONS: Infants with spina bifida who had their spinal lesion repaired in-utero move their legs and kick quite often. They appear to be sensitive to the movement context in which they are placed.
IMPLICATIONS: Therapists and parents should consider how the movement context influences the leg movements and kicks of infants with spina bifida.
Engstrom, Ann; Lucken, Shannon; Sis, Kayla; and Wehrheim, Sarah, "The Influence of Age, Position, and Timing of Surgical Repair on the Kicks of Infants with Spina Bifida" (2014). Doctor of Physical Therapy Research Papers. 35.