Akron, OH (PRWEB) February 27, 2014
Over 50% of older men and 39% of older women die or are living in a long-term care facility within two years of fracturing their hip. While outpatient physical therapy has been shown to be beneficial to regaining independence, it may not be cost-effective. Physical therapy researchers in Boston, MA recently completed a four-year randomized controlled clinical trial to examine the effectiveness of a lower-cost, post-rehabilitation home exercise program. Their findings were published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
The aim of the study was to determine the efficacy of a six-month, functionally oriented, home exercise hip rehabilitation program with modest in-person contact with a physical therapist intended to extend the benefits of the initial hip fracture rehabilitation. The researchers randomly assigned nearly 200 functionally limited patients over 60 years old to either an exercise group or control group after finishing traditional hip fracture rehabilitation. The exercise group performed six months of exercise at home, while the control group received education at home.
The home exercise program was performed three times per week for six months. A physical therapist visited the patient in their home three times for one hour to instruct and monitor the program. The exercise program utilized TheraBand exercise bands using the Strong for Life exercise program. This exercise program focused on functional movements, such as standing from a chair, rather than traditional strength impairments. Patients also performed other functional exercises using steps and weighted vests. The patients received monthly phone calls and received cognitive and behavioral strategies as needed.
The patients in the exercise group significantly increased their function (16%), mobility (4%) and physical activity levels (7%) compared to the control group. There were no adverse events despite the functional limitations of the exercise group. In addition, balance significantly improved in the exercise group compared with the control group at six months.
The researchers concluded that home exercise after hip fracture rehabilitation with TheraBand exercise bands could result in modest improvement in physical function after 6 months. They stated, “With this intervention, there was no need for participants to travel outside their home or to use expensive equipment.” Furthermore, “participants were able to perform the exercise effectively and safely in their home.”
REFERENCE: Latham NK, et al. Effect of a home-based exercise program on functional recovery following hip fracture. A randomized clinical trial. JAMA. 2014. 311(7):700-08.
Disclosure: TheraBand Academy provided the bands used in this study.
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Featuring leading brands like Biofreeze®, Bon Vital'®, TheraBand™, Cramer®, Prossage® and Pedigenix®, Performance Health offers a broad portfolio of products for the therapy, rehabilitation, wellness, massage, sports medicine, performance and podiatric markets. In addition to market-leading products, Performance Health provides practice building support, evidence-based protocols, clinical and product education, turn-key dispensing and pain management solutions.