Abstract Information


Cardiovascular fitness responses to Body-Weight Support Treadmill Training and Arm-Crank Ergometry Training in Individual with Complete Motor Spinal Cord Injury: Randomized Control Trial

1Alrashidi A, 2Hubli M, 3MacDonald M, 3Hick A, 4Ditor D, 5Craven C, 5Verrier M, 3Currie K, 1Krassioukov A
1University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British co, Canada; 2University of Zurich, Zurich, , Switzerland; 3McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada; 4Brock University, St. Catharines,, Ontario, Canada; 5University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Objective: Individuals with spinal cord injury found to have a higher percentage of cardiovascular disease compared to their matched healthy individuals. Recent studies revealed that the cardiovascular diseases and its complications are the leading cause of death with spinal cord injury population. This is attributed to lack of physical activity with this population as they have generally sedentary lifestyle. So, any intervention that encompasses physical activity is highly recommended. Management and controlling of cardiovascular dysfunction would potentially reduce the rate of premature death. There are limited studies that regular exercise training could improve the cardiovascular outcomes. The aim, therefore, of this study is to investigate and compare the effects of a 6-month training program of two modalities of training including manually-assisted Body Weight-Supported Treadmill Training (BWSTT) and Arm-Cycle Ergometry Training (ACET) on the cardiovascular fitness in chronic motor complete spinal cord injury individuals.
Design and Method: A multicenter, randomized, controlled single-blinded clinical trial. Individuals who sustained a motor-completed spinal cord injury (C4-T6, AIS A or B), with a history of the injury ≥ 1 year, between 18-60 years of age were recruited in the study. Eligible participants were assigned randomly into one of the treatment groups BWSTT or ACET. Both groups trained 3 times per week for 6 months. Stepping with BWSTT was initiated by well-trained trainers one at each leg mimicking the normal gait pattern. Also, as required a third trainer to support the trunk to minimize the trunk swinging. Peak oxygen consumption (VO2peak ¬ml/kg/min) was measured by graded arm ergometry test at baseline and after the training program completion.
Result: 24 participants (BWSTT, n=14) and (ACET, n=11) completed the study. Peak oxygen consumption with ACET group improved from 13.5 +̱7.7 to 16.6+̱9.3 (P = 0.016) compared to a non-significant change with BWSTT (from 13.3+̱5.9 to 13.8+̱4, P = 0.31)
Conclusion: The result revealed that the arm cycling exercise has superior effect on improving the peak fitness compared to BWSTT in persons with chronic complete motor spinal cord injury.
Keywords: Spinal cord injury, peak oxygen uptake, body weight support treadmill training, Arm Crank Ergometry Training

Support:- Canadian Institute of Health Research, Craig H. Neilsen Foundation, King Fahd Medical City.


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