Shoulder Pain in Wheelchair Users With Tetraplegia and Paraplegia
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OBJECTIVE: To compare the prevalence and intensity of shoulder pain experienced during daily functional activities in individuals with tetraplegia and individuals with paraplegia who use manual wheelchairs.
DESIGN: Self-report survey.
SETTING: General community.
PARTICIPANTS: Fifty-five women and 140 men, 92 subjects with tetraplegia and 103 subjects with paraplegia who met inclusion criteria of 3 hours per week of manual wheelchair use and at least 1 year since onset of spinal cord injury.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Respondents completed a demographic and medical history questionnaire and the Wheelchair User's Shoulder Pain Index (WUSPI), a measure of pain during typical daily activities.
RESULTS: More than two thirds of the sample reported shoulder pain since beginning wheelchair use, with 59% of the subjects with tetraplegia and 42% of the subjects with paraplegia reporting current pain. Performance-corrected WUSPI scores were significantly higher in subjects with tetraplegia than in subjects with paraplegia.
CONCLUSIONS: Both the prevalence and intensity of shoulder pain was significantly higher in subjects with tetraplegia than in subjects with paraplegia. Efforts to monitor and prevent shoulder pain should continue after rehabilitation.
Medicine and Health Sciences
Activities of Daily Living, Adult, Middle Aged, Pain Measurement, Paraplegia, Quadriplegia, Shoulder Pain, Spinal Cord Injuries, Wheelchairs
Curtis, K A; Drysdale, G A; Lanza, R D; Kolber, M; Vitolo, R S; and West, R, "Shoulder Pain in Wheelchair Users With Tetraplegia and Paraplegia" (1999). Department of Physical Therapy Faculty Articles. 67.