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Ya Ching Hung EdD. and Aryeh Spingarn EP-C, CSCS, EIM-Level 2 Queens College, City University of New York Department of Family, Nutrition, and Exercise Sciences, Changes in Reach to Eat Movement Control After Intensive Training for Children with Unilateral Cerebral Palsy. Purpose: The current study compares the effects of an intervention on children with Congenital Hemiplegia during a simple eating task using kinematic analyses. Previous studies looked at simple bimanual tasks such as opening a drawer; no studies examined the effects of intensive training on unimanual reach, grasp, and eat movement control. Methods: 20 children with Unilateral Spastic Cerebral Palsy (USCP) ages 4-10 (MACS level I-II) were assigned to one of two groups, Hand-Arm Bimanual Intensive Training (HABIT) or Constraint-Induced Movement Therapy (CIT). They were asked to perform the task of reaching out, grasping, and eating using their more affected hand. 3-d kinematic analyses were used to further identify three specific movement stages: Reaching, Grasping, and Eating. Assessments were given before and after the 90-hour treatment program of 6 hours a day for 15 days. Results: A one-way repeated measures ANOVA with a significance level p=0.05 was used. There were statistically significant decreases in movement times after training for both groups: Reach time (P=0.005), Grasping time (p=0.004), Eating time (p=0.043). In addition, shoulder displacement was decreased after training (p=0.001). Conclusions: Intensive trainings such as the ones in this study are effective tools at improving unimanual movement control for those with USCP.



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