Development of clinical guidelines for the prescription of a seated wheelchair or mobility scooter for people with traumatic brain injury or spinal cord injury

Sue Lukersmith, Lesley Radbron, Katherine Hopman

Research output: Contribution to journalOther Journal Articlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background/aim: Providing a wheelchair or scooter is a complex therapy intervention aimed at enhancing the person's functioning. The research and experience has shown that a wheelchair which is poorly matched to the individual, adversely affects potential activities and participation, lifestyle goals, health status and can be costly. The development of an evidence-based clinical guideline will provide a synthesis of the evidence and recommendations for best practice. Methods: The guidelines were developed using a rigorous methodology of systematic search for primary studies, critical appraisal and synthesis of the evidence using an adaptation of the National Health and Medical Research Council recommendation grades in conjunction with a multidisciplinary working party. Results: Seventy-six recommendations were developed from 44 clinical questions related to goals, assessment and review, capacity and performance, upper limb capacity and injury risk, wheelchair features, propulsion, training, transport and maintenance. Resources were developed to support the use of the guidelines. Only examples of recommendations are provided here. The complete guidelines and technical report should be downloaded from http://www.lifetimecare.nsw.gov.au/Brain_Injury.aspx. Conclusion: The guidelines provide appraisal and synthesis of the literature and recommendations for best practice on the prescription of a wheelchair or scooter for adults with spinal cord injury and/or traumatic brain injury. The guidelines are intended to reduce the potential for poor wheelchair prescription, inform and guide practice to enhance outcomes. Through judicious application of the available research, these guidelines provide best practice recommendations for prescribing the most appropriate wheelchair for a person with a traumatic brain injury/spinal cord injury.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)378-386
Number of pages9
JournalAustralian Occupational Therapy Journal
Volume60
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013
Externally publishedYes

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