LegTutor Complements Aquatic Therapy for Knee and Hip Replacement Patients

Aquatic Therapy

Image by Camp ASCCA via Flickr

Nancy Walsh, Staff Writer for MedPage Today writes in an article on December 22, 2011 which is reviewed by Dori F. Zaleznik, MD; Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine Harvard Medical School, Boston and Dorothy Caputo, MA, RN, BC-ADM, CDE, Nurse Planner.

 Aquatic therapy leads to better physical function in patients having total knee replacement, although it is not beneficial in patients undergoing hip arthroplasty, according to a German study.
Aquatic therapy is popular in Europe for patients undergoing joint replacement. It is thought to help patients regain balance and muscle strength.
The researchers noted that many factors can influence the quality of life following joint replacement, including patient age and sex  none of which can be altered by caregivers.
Therefore, this is one of the few studies demonstrating a clinically important effect on the health-related quality of life  by a factor that can be influenced by healthcare professionals.
Many patients are less than satisfied with the results after knee replacement allowing for further benefit with aquatic rehabilitation.
Further research is warranted to identify the optimal time frame for the start of aquatic therapy  in order to exploit the potential of aquatic therapy for improving clinical outcome.
For hip replacement early aquatic therapy should be avoided.
In addition, the study did not compare early or late aquatic therapy with no aquatic therapy, because in Germany patients expect this during rehabilitation after joint replacement.
The LegTutor has been developed to facilitate evaluation and treatment of the lower extremity including isolated and combined hip and knee movements.
The LegTutor is actually an ergonomic wearable leg brace connected to dedicated rehabilitation software.  The LegTutor™ rehabilitation concept is based on performing controlled exercise rehabilitation practice at a patient customized level with real time and accurate feedback on the patient’s performance. This means that the LegTutor™ system allows the physical therapist to prescribe a leg rehabilitation program customized to the patient’s knee and hip movement ability at their stage of rehabilitation. The LegTutor uses biofeedback to keep the patient motivated to do the exercise practice with the exercises designed in the form of challenging games that are suitable for a wide variety of other neurological and orthopedic injury and disease as well as post trauma and orthopedic surgery. The LegTutor™ and its co devices (HandTutor, ArmTutor, 3DTutor) is also used by physical and occupational therapists  for upper and lower extremity rehabilitation. The Tutor system is used by many leading rehabilitation centers worldwide and has full FDA and CE certification. It is designed for children and adults and can be used at home supported by telerehabilitation. See http://www.HandTutor.com for more information.

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