Long-term follow-up of a randomized controlled trial on additional core stability exercises training for improving dynamic sitting balance and trunk control in stroke patients
Analyse the effect of core stability exercises in addition to conventional physiotherapy training three months after the intervention ended.Design:
A randomized controlled trial.Setting:
Seventy-nine stroke survivors.Interventions:
In the intervention period, both groups underwent conventional physiotherapy performed five days/week for five weeks, and in addition the experimental group performed core stability exercises for 15 minutes/day. Afterwards, during a three-month follow-up period, both groups underwent usual care that could eventually include conventional physiotherapy or physical exercise but not in a controlled condition.Main measures:
Primary outcome was trunk control and dynamic sitting balance assessed by the Spanish-Version of Trunk Impairment Scale 2.0 and Function in Sitting Test. Secondary outcomes were standing balance and gait evaluated by the Berg Balance Scale, Tinetti Test, Brunel Balance Assessment, Spanish-Version of Postural Assessment Scale for Stroke and activities of daily living using the Barthel Index.Results:
A total of 68 subjects out of 79 completed the three-month follow-up period. The mean difference (SD) between groups was 0.78 (1.51) points (p = 0.003) for total score on the Spanish-Version of Trunk Impairment Scale 2.0, 2.52 (6.46) points (p = 0.009) for Function in Sitting Test, dynamic standing balance was 3.30 (9.21) points (p= 0.009) on the Berg Balance Scale, gait was 0.82 (1.88) points (p = 0.002) by Brunel Balance Assessment (stepping), and 1.11 (2.94) points (p = 0.044) by Tinetti Test (gait), all in favour of core stability exercises.Conclusions:
Core stability exercises plus conventional physiotherapy have a positive long-term effect on improving dynamic sitting and standing balance and gait in post-stroke patients.