Progressive Exercise To Address Impaired Balance And Mobility In Older Adults Referred for Home Care Physiotherapy: Is It Beneficial To Target Vestibular Control And Lower Limb Muscle Strength
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Purpose: The primary purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of a progressive exercise program on vestibular control of standing balance, in older adults referred for home care physiotherapy because of balance impairment. Methods: Ability to use vestibular inputs for postural control in standing was assessed using the Clinical Test of Sensory Interaction and Balance (CTSIB). Participants who had CTSIBTest 5 scores of < 15 seconds were accepted into the study. Participants were randomly assigned to an 8 week intervention of progressive balance exercise targeting ability to use vestibular control and high intensity progressive resistance exercise (PRE) or high intensity PRE only. Results: The difference in CTSIBTest 5 scores of the RBE Group (median 23.3 s) was greater than the difference in CTSIBTest 5 scores for the RE Group (median 0.60 s) (W = 18.0, p <0.05). Conclusions: The results of this study provide preliminary evidence that the ability to use vestibular control in older adults, referred for home care physiotherapy for balance impairment, can be modified by progressive balance training and resistance exercise but not by resistance exercise alone.