Journal of Student Physical Therapy Research
Study Design: Only research studies published in peer-reviewed journals in the last two decades and published in the English language were included. Studies centered on surgical or pharmacological interventions were not included. To examine the strengths and weaknesses of these studies, the Physiotherapy Evidence Database (PEDro) scale and Sackett’s levels of evidence were used. Objectives: The aim of this paper is to analyze literature published in the past two decades, which explores the effects of stretching when used to reduce spasticity and increase range of motion in children with spastic cerebral palsy (CP), as well as to address the effects of manual versus positional stretching as provided by physical therapists. Background: Physical therapists believe we can decrease joint degradation due to abnormal posture, as well as increase mobility and independence with a focus on the reduction of spasticity during posture and gait. A consensus in current literature seems to be that passive stretching is used widely to reduce spasticity in children with CP, but without scientific evidence to provide a justification for its use or to dictate the conditions in which to administer this treatment. Methods and Measures: The literature search for stretching in children with CP was conducted using the following key words: stretching, positioning, serial casting, spasticity, range of motion, cerebral palsy, and children. The following databases were used: Academic Search Complete, CINAHL, Cochrane Library, PEDro, Pubmed, ScienceDirect, SCOPUS, and SPORTDiscus. Results: A total of 13 articles on stretching in children with cerebral palsy were found from the years 1990 to 2011. Two individual studies were found in which manual stretching was the intervention. Nine individual studies were found in which positional stretching was the intervention, four of which serial casting was the intervention. Two systematic reviews exist in the last two decades that explore the effect of stretching in children with CP, however, neither encompass all of the studies reviewed in this paper nor do they discuss serial casting as a form of positional stretching. Conclusion: Taken together, the individual studies using positional stretching and the small randomized controlled trial using electrical stimulation in addition to manual stretching led to better outcomes for reducing spasticity and increasing passive range of motion compared to manual stretching alone. research report is a systematic review of literature pertaining to the effectiveness of interactive gaming versus traditional rehabilitation methods in balance training post cerebral vascular attack (CVA)
Davenport, T. E.
Passive stretching and its effect on spasticity and range of motion in children with cerebral palsy: a systematic review.
Journal of Student Physical Therapy Research, 5(1), 11–22.