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Keywords:

  • Parkinson's disease;
  • gait;
  • exercise;
  • rehabilitation

Abstract

This randomized controlled clinical trial was conducted to compare the effects of movement rehabilitation strategies and exercise therapy in hospitalized patients with idiopathic Parkinson's disease. Participants were randomly assigned to a group that received movement strategy training or musculoskeletal exercises during 2 consecutive weeks of hospitalization. The primary outcome was disability as measured by the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale, UPDRS (motor and ADL components). Secondary outcomes were balance, walking speed, endurance, and quality of life. Assessments were carried out by blinded testers at baseline, after the 2 weeks of treatment and 3 months after discharge. The movement strategy group showed improvements on several outcome measures from admission to discharge, including the UPDRS, 10 m walk, 2 minute walk, balance, and PDQ39. However, from discharge to follow up there was significant regression in performance on the 2 minute walk and PDQ39. For the exercise group, quality of life improved significantly during inpatient hospitalization and this was retained at follow-up. Inpatient rehabilitation produces short term reductions in disability and improvements in quality of life in people with Parkinson's disease. © 2008 Movement Disorder Society