Physiotherapy and occupational therapy for juvenile chronic arthritis: custom and practice in five centres in the UK, USA and Canada
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Hackett, J., Johnson, B., Parkin, A. and Southwood, T. (1996) ‘Physiotherapy and occupational therapy for juvenile chronic arthritis: custom and practice in five centres in the uk, usa and canada’, Rheumatology, 35(7), pp. 695–699. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1093/rheumatology/35.7.695.
Physiotherapy and occupational therapy are widely accepted as being of central importance for the treatment of juvenile chronic arthritis (JCA). However, these approaches have rarely been subject to critical scrutiny. The aims of this report are to highlight some of the inter-centre similarities and differences observed in the implementation of physical and occupational therapy for JCA, and to emphasize the need for scientifically controlled research in this area. During a series of visits to several paediatric rheumatology units in the UK, USA and Canada, three aspects of the service were noted: treatment philosophy, physical interventions used for the treatment of JCA and quality-of-life and independence training activities. There was general consensus with the philosophy that early physical intervention was a vital part of the treatment plan for JCA, although all therapists were concerned that compliance with treatment modalities was poor. Differences between units in the approach to acute arthritis, the use of foot orthoses and wrist splints, the treatment of joint contractures and the use of general quality-of-life training activities were noted. Although it was widely recognized that controlled research into the efficacy of physical intervention was needed, no centre had a co-ordinated plan for such investigations.