Does exercise affect quality of life and participation of adolescents and adults with cerebral palsy: a systematic review
Reviewed by Jaishree Capoor
Citation: James Czencz, Nora Shields, Margaret Wallen, Peter H. Wilson, Thomas B. McGuckian & Christine Imms (2022) Does exercise affect quality of life and participation of adolescents and adults with cerebral palsy: a systematic review, Disability and Rehabilitation, DOI: 10.1080/09638288.2022.2148297
Study type/Population: A systematic review of articles (inception to 2022) assessing the effect of exercise for adults with cerebral palsy (CP) on quality of life, participation, functional mobility, pain, fatigue, mood, and self-efficacy. A total of 1,758 articles were screened and 17 studies involving 532 participants were included in the review. Interventions examined were mainly strength, aerobic or treadmill training, dance, and swimming.
Key Findings: No studies assessed the effect of exercise on improving participation. The interventions were based mainly on strength or aerobic training. There was some evidence that exercise may have positive effect on fatigue, quality of life and self-efficacy but not during follow-up as reported in one study. There was no serious adverse events reported from exercise interventions, highlighting exercise as a safe option. Further studies are needed representing adults >30 years and adults in GMFCS level IV and V.
Translation to practice (what this paper adds): Exercise appears to be safe for adults with CP, and the type of exercise selected should be based on personal choice, access, and ease of participation. There is a need for change in future work around understanding how exercise affects participation and quality of life in general. Further studies are needed to elucidate the effects of exercise in adults with CP across the lifespan and functional ability.