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Title: The pain experiences of powered wheelchair users
Authors: De Souza, LH
Frank, JL
Neophytou, C
Keywords: Assistive technology;Pain;Powered wheelchairs;Users’ experiences;Wheelchair users
Issue Date: 2012
Publisher: Informa Healthcare
Citation: Disability and Rehabilitation, 34(9), 770 - 778, 2012
Abstract: Purpose: To explore the experience of pain and discomfort in users of electric-powered indoor/outdoor wheelchairs (EPIOCs) provided by a National Health Service. Methods: EPIOC users receiving their chair between February and November 2002 (N=74) were invited to participate in a telephone questionnaire/interview and 64 (aged 1081 years) agreed. Both specific and open-ended questions examined the presence of pain/discomfort, its severity, minimizing and aggravating factors, particularly in relation to the EPIOC and its use. Results: Most EPIOC users described experiences of pain with 17% reporting severe pain. Over half felt their pain was influenced by the wheelchair and few (25%) considered their chair eased their symptoms. The most common strategy for pain relief was taking medication. Other self-help strategies included changing position, exercise and complementary therapies. Respondents emphasized the provision of backrests, armrests, footrests and cushions which might alleviate or exacerbate pain, highlighting the importance of appropriate assessment for this high dependency group. Conclusions: Users related pain to their underlying medical condition, their wheelchair or a combination of the two. User feedback is essential to ensure that the EPIOC meets health needs with minimal pain. This becomes more important as the health condition of users changes over time.
Description: Copyright © 2012 Informa UK, Ltd. This is the author's accepted manuscript. The final published article is available from the link below.
ISSN: 0963-8288
Appears in Collections:Community Health and Public Health
Dept of Clinical Sciences Research Papers

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