Journal of Rehabilitation Research & Development (JRRD)

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Volume 53 Number 6, 2017
   Pages 1139 — 1150

Abstract — The perceived functional benefit of dynamic arm supports in daily life

Loek van der Heide, MSc;* Luc de Witte, PhD, MD

Research Centre for Technology in Care (CAPHRI), Zuyd University of Applied Sciences, Heerlen, the Netherlands; and School for Public Health and Primary Care, Maastricht University, Maastricht, the Netherlands

Abstract — Dynamic arm supports are provided to assist with activities of daily living (ADLs) in people with limited upper-limb function. However, the perceived functional benefit of these devices in daily life is unknown. Insight into the functional benefit may give direction to the development of new devices and may affect the factors that patients and their health care providers consider during the selection process of a device. A cross-sectional study involving 23 Dutch experienced dynamic arm support users was performed in the Netherlands. The study included a questionnaire, an interview, and an observation of ADL task performance in the domestic setting. Twenty participants completed this study. Five users had a large perceived functional benefit, nine a moderate benefit, and five no benefit (one was unable to indicate the benefit). People with limited functional abilities benefited most. Participants varied in the amount of device use, activities the device is used for, and reasons for using (or not using) the device. On an individual level, selection using a selection tool and a good evaluation of the prescription could improve user-device matches.

Key words: activities of daily living, assistive technology, dynamic arm supports, field trial, functional benefit, neuromuscular disorders, occupational therapy, orthotic devices, rehabilitation, upper limb.


View HTML ?? View PDF ?? Contents Vol. 53, No. 6
This article and any supplementary material should be cited as follows:
van der Heide L, de Witte L. The perceived functional benefit of dynamic arm supports in daily life. J Rehabil Res Dev. 2016;53(6):1139–50.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1682/JRRD.2015.06.0099
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