We describe a retrospective study of 42 patients admitted to Sunnaas Rehabilitation Hospital with suspect postpolio syndrome over a period of two years. The patients were 32 females and 10 males aged 28-74 years (mean 54 years). 29 were married or cohabitant, 31 had children, and 20 were in paid employment. The mean age at onset of polio was 12 years, with an average interval of 36 years between onset of polio and onset of new problems. The mean duration of new health problems was seven years. The most common such problems were pain in muscles and joints, general fatigue and new weakness of the muscles. 28 of the patients needed personal assistance to carry out everyday activities. 33 had braces, crutches or wheelchair for ambulation. Lung function was moderately reduced and physical working capacity was severely reduced. Physiotherapy, ergotherapy and technical aids were provided for 38 of the patients, 16 received assistance to organizing social support or help at home, 13 were helped to make practical changes in their homes, and eight were provided with a wheelchair. According to this study, most patients with the postpolio syndrome need interdisciplinary evaluation and management in a rehabilitation hospital.
The aim of the present study was to investigate sense of coherence (SOC) in adults with cerebral palsy (CP) compared to the general population.
A questionnaire was sent to a representative sample of adults with CP, including the 3-item version of SOC and items on their life situation and follow-up programmes. The study included persons over 18 years of age with CP and without intellectual disability. The results were compared with the results from a reference group.
The 406 respondents with CP (48.5% females, 51.5% males) were 18-72 years of age. The distribution of the different types of CP coincided with international epidemiological studies. Mean SOC was significantly lower in the adults with CP than in the reference group. The largest difference was found in the domain of comprehensibility. The factors most important in relation to SOC were level of education, marital status, life satisfaction and fatigue.
Early experiences of predictability, balance between challenges and personal resources and finding these challenges worthy of investment, are prerequisites for developing sense of coherence. The present study suggests that these factors are less present in early socialization of persons with CP compared to the general population, and underlines the need for follow-up programmes that emphasize existential aspects and coping strategies.
This study aims to assess the prevalence of fatigue among persons who have lived with traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) for >20 years, and to compare the results with fatigue scores found among the general population (GP). Another objective was to study the association between fatigue and clinical variables, including mental health, among the study population.
A cross-sectional study.
Sunnaas Rehabilitation Hospital (SunRH), Norway.
All SCI survivors (n=237) admitted for rehabilitation at SunRH between 1961 and 1982 were asked to participate. Fatigue was measured with the Fatigue Questionnaire (FQ). Mental health was assessed with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS). Linear regressions were used to examine those variables with the potential to contribute to fatigue.
A total of 153 persons responded to the FQ, and in 39 cases the scores were consistent with fatigue. Surprisingly, the prevalence of fatigue (total fatigue (TF)) did not differ between the study population and the norm. However, the results indicated statistically significantly higher score of physical fatigue (PF) and statistically significantly lower score of mental fatigue among the SCI group when compared with the GP. Higher fatigue scores were associated with fatigue-causing pharmaceuticals and with higher scores on the HADS-depression subscale.
The prevalence of fatigue was 25% among persons who had lived with SCI for >20 years, and similar to that in the GP. Our results point to medications and mental health aspects as possible contributors to PF severity in SCI.
OBJECTIVES: Fatigue is commonly reported among polio survivors. The aims of the present study were to examine the incidence of perceived fatigue among a sample of Norwegian polio survivors, and to examine the association between the level of fatigue and sociodemographic and health variables. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A mailed questionnaire containing, among others, Fatigue Questionnaire, Fatigue Severity Scale, sociodemographic and health variables were sent to a representative group of 312 Norwegian polio survivors. 276 subjects (88%) answered the questionnaire. RESULTS: The incidence of fatigue among the polio survivors were considerably higher than in the normative data. Physical fatigue, more than mental fatigue, represented the major problems. Polio subjects who reported severe fatigue had significantly more other diseases and health problems than the normative group. CONCLUSIONS: The diagnosis and treatment of other or related physical conditions should be given higher priority in the management of persons with late effects of poliomyelitis, as these conditions probably can be the reasons for fatigue more than poliomyelitis sequelae alone.
The purpose of this investigation was to study subjective symptoms, medical and social situation, pulmonary function and physical work capacity over a period of 3-5 years in patients with post-polio syndrome. We assessed a consecutive series of 68 patients admitted to our hospital because of post-polio syndrome, and re-assessed 63 of these patients 3-5 years later; 43 women and 20 men with mean age 55 +/- 10 (1 SD) years at the second evaluation. The patients answered a questionnaire about their subjective symptoms and medical and social situation, and underwent spirometry and symptom-limited exercise stress testing. Most patients experienced more serious symptoms and physical disability connected with their polio, while the majority reported that their psychological health was unchanged or had improved. Lung function was on average moderately reduced and of restrictive type, and only minor changes were found over the 3-5 years. A pronounced reduction in peak oxygen uptake was seen at the first evaluation, especially in women (59% of predicted). At the second examination, peak oxygen uptake was further reduced, especially in men, more than predicted by increasing age. The body weight and body mass index of the patients increased significantly during the same period. These results indicate that subjective symptoms and physical disability connected with polio increased with increasing age in these patients with post-polio syndrome, and cardio-respiratory deconditioning and weight gain also became more serious problems in most patients. The psychological status of the patients remained stable, however, or improved, possibly due to our comprehensive re-rehabilitation and educational programme.
Comment In: Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen. 1997 Apr 30;117(11):16459198952
OBJECTIVES: To investigate self-reported locomotion skills in persons with cerebral palsy (CP) and to investigate variables potentially associated with deterioration of walking skills. DESIGN: Cross-sectional retrospective survey. SETTING AND SUBJECTS: A multidimensional mailed questionnaire was sent to 766 persons with CP, 18 years or over, without intellectual disabilities, living in Norway. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The questionnaire consisted of demographic and diagnostic items, items on locomotion skills, and physical function (SF-36). RESULTS: In total 406 persons, 51% males and 49% females from 18 to 72 years (mean 34 years, SD 11 years) with all categories of CP responded. Median age for reported walking debut was 3 years, with a range from 1 to 14 years. In total 216 respondents (53%) walked without support, 104 persons (25%) walked with support, 39 persons (10%) had lost their walking skills, and 47 (12%) had never been able to walk. Mean level of physical function (SF-36) was 53 out of 100. There were 97 persons (27%) who reported improvement of walking skills, mainly before 25 years, 102 (28%) reported no change, and 160 (44%) reported deterioration, mainly before 35 years of age. Deterioration was significantly associated with older age, delayed walking debut and severe neurological impairment. Self-reported causes of deterioration were pain, fatigue and lack of adapted physical activity. CONCLUSION: Deterioration of locomotion skills is a significant problem in persons with CP from an early age, documenting the need for life-long follow-up. The predictors above should be investigated in further clinical studies, searching for potential causal pathways.
'The Norwegian Polio Study 1994' was performed to make a nation-wide survey of the medical and social situation, and of the needs of anterior poliomyelitis (polio). A questionnaire, consisting of 133 questions with sub-questions, was sent to a total of 2392 polio victims, most of them registered in 'The National Society of Polio Victims' in Norway. 1449 persons (61%) answered. Sixty-six per cent were between 45 and 64 years of age, 25% were above 64 years and 9% were under 45 years. When specifying new health problems, 85% stated that they had experienced increased weakness in muscles affected by polio, while 58% had experienced increased weakness in previous non-affected muscles. Other health problems related to polio were fatigue during exercise (80%), general fatigue (57%), joint pain (58%), muscular pain (58%) and cold intolerance (62%). The participants indicated an increasing need of aids, but 80% were still independent of help from others and 57% were still employed, fully or part time. Only 17% were satisfied with the public health services for polio survivors, while 67% of those who had undergone comprehensive examination at some central hospital were satisfied. This study indicates an obvious need of building up expertise in multidisciplinary evaluation and treatment of post polio problems in countries where acute polio has been eliminated.
"The Norwegian Polio Study 1994" was conducted in order to survey the medical and social situation and the needs of polio victims. A questionnaire consisting of 133 questions with subquestions was sent to a total of 2,392 polio victims in Norway. 1,449 persons responded, of whom 66% were between 45 and 64 years of age. When specifying new health problems, between 55% and 85% stated that they had experienced increasing weakness of the muscles affected by polio, weakness in previously non-affected muscles, fatigue, intolerance to cold and/or pain in muscles and joints. Only 17% were satisfied with the public health services for polio victims. On the other hand, 67% of those who had undergone a comprehensive evaluation and had been treated at a central hospital were satisfied. The study indicates an obvious need to build up expertise in multidisciplinary evaluation and treatment of post-polio victims.
Ten patients with cystic fibrosis (CF), 5 girls and 5 boys, 11 years of age, underwent pulmonary function and bicycle exercise testing. The material includes all but 2 CF patients in this age group in southern and eastern Norway. The CF children had a moderately reduced pulmonary function, the girls more pronounced than the boys. The mean maximal oxygen uptake (max VO2) in the CF boys was 55 ml/kg/min (94% of age predicted value; range 79-105%), and the CF girls 42 ml/kg/min (79% of age predicted value; range 67-89%). The mean maximal peak heart rate was 195 beats/min. Only one CF girl showed apparent pulmonary limitation during exercise. Increased ventilatory equivalent for oxygen was found during both rest and exercise for the CF girls, but only during rest for the CF boys. Max VO2 was fairly well related to the habitudinal physical activity of the children (r = 0.79).
The article describes the rehabilitation programmes for stroke patients at Sunnaas Hospital, a Norwegian university hospital for rehabilitation. Patients with complex and less frequent problems following a cerebrovascular accident can attend this third line hospital for primary or secondary rehabilitation. In addition, special short-term programmes are offered to assess the potentials for rehabilitation, competence for a driver's licence, vocational ability and swallowing problems, as well as to judge the need for technical aids for communication, mobility and management of the surroundings. The various programmes are described in detail. During 1996 a total of 306 stroke patients, median age 57 years, attended the hospital. The hospital aims to continue to be a highly specialized centre for stroke patients, also in the future, with different kinds of comprehensive and multidisciplinary rehabilitation programmes for these patients.