A Norweigan walking skills training program has significantly increased
physical performance in patients undergoing rehabilitation after total hip
arthroplasty, according to a study published in Arthritis Care &
After 5 months, 66% of the patients in the training group were able to
walk 164 feet or more where only 15% of the control group had reached that
mobility level. By 12 months, the 35 patients in the training group had an
overall greater improvement in both walking distance and stair climbing
exercises over the 33 patients in the control group, according to a news
The training program was well tolerated by patients and no
complications were report[ed]. Our findings suggest physical rehabilitation
helps improve mobility and function in patients who received hip
replacements, Kristi E. Heiberg, RPT, MSc, stated in the release.
Researchers randomly selected 88 patients between October 2008 and March
2010 from two Oslo hospitals to either join the training program or enter the
control group. Led by a physical therapist twice a week over 12 sessions,
patients practiced walking over obstacles, walking with turns, sitting to
standing and climbing stairs in the program. The exercises in the 70-minute
session were developed to improve walking endurance, coordination, balance,
strength and flexibility.
- Heiberg KE, Bruun-Olsen V, Ekeland A, Mengshoel AM. Effect of a
walking skill training programme in patients who have undergone total hip
arthroplastywith follow-up one year after surgery. Arthrit Care
Res. 2011. [Published online before print.] doi: 10.1002/acr.20681.
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