To help keep myself accountable to keep reading AJOT on my metro rides and have an easy way to track what I have read to prevent another NBCOT renewal panic attack, I have decided to do little write-ups on the articles I read. To best facilitate this, I've decided to create a feature! Having a feature makes me feel more like a "real author," like I wanted to be as a kid. This is only bimonthly, so hopefully I can keep up with it and also help schedule some posts. If this is a feature you'd like to see more of on the blog, comment or email and let me know. Read on for the overview of what I've been reading, be warned, it's long.
AJOT January/February 2010 (members only link)
Research Scholars Initiative--Randomized Controlled Trial of the Breast Cancer Recovery Program for Women With Breast Cancer--Related Lymphedema
Marjorie K. McClure-OTR/L, CLT--LANA, Richard J. McClure-PhD, Richard Day-PhD, Adam M. Brufsky-MD, PhD
-- I was impressed with this program as it didn't seem complicated, and it could probably be easily reproduced in other hospitals or outpatient centers that have an oncology service and a therapist providing lymphedema service. Unlike some support groups, since this one is structured around exercise, it seems like it would be relatively easy to schedule.
Telerehabilitation and Electrical Stimulation: An Occupation-Based, Client-Centered Stroke Intervention
Valerie Hill Hermann-MS, OTR/L, Mandy Herzog-OTR/L, Rachel Jordan-OTR/L, Maura Hofherr-OTR/L, Peter Levine-PTA, Stephen J. Page-FAHA
-- I thought this was cool since I haven't used the FES-Nes for CVA rehab but have been curious about the product from the ads I see. This looked like a promising pilot study for tele-rehab, hopefully this was all able to be billed as an outpatient. I think it will be awhile before telerehab can really take off due to the general level of computer skills of the population we serve, but it is promising. Off topic, I felt that there were a lot of vague, uncited phrases ("In recent years, telemedicine has been used considerably for medical treatment of stroke.") and had flashbacks of my marked up manuscript from my research advisor, a strong proponent of justifying every statement.
Documenting Progress: Hand Therapy Treatment Shift From Biomechanical to Occupational Adaptation
Jada Jack-OTR/L, Rebecca I. Estes-PhD, OTR/L, ATP
--OA has always been my favorite frame of reference. Hand therapy is tough practice, lots of protocols to follow, surgeons expecting certain results, it's very hard to break away from the biomechanical model. But it can be done, and I'm glad that these therapists were able to provide their client with increased satisfaction from the model. I would advocate for any hand therapist to at least be eclectic enough to tap into other models besides biomechanical if not for great client satisfaction and improved independence, then to retain our claim on OCCUPATION which is what makes us unique. Props to my hands teacher, who always emphasized occupation based treatment; and to Todd, the hand therapist I worked with who in addition to his goals would have the client keep a diary of activities they could resume as tx went along.
Grasping Naturally Versus Grasping With a Reacher in People Without Disability: Motor Control and Muscle Activation Differences
Kinsuk K. Maitra-PhD, OTR/L, Katherine Philips-MS, OTR/L, Martin S. Rice-PhD, OTR/L
--Glad that someone put down in writing that you can't just hand someone a reacher and be done with the interaction. (This has been a deterrent to us putting AE on the floors in the supply rooms, a fear that non-therapists will give them out without any training) This also reminded me of the study I wanted to do looking at cognitive level (through MMSE or MOCA) and how well clients could "grasp" (how punny) the use of the reacher, because there is definitely an anecdotal cutoff point and I would like to see what that amounts to in real life.
Near-Vision Acuity Levels and Performance on Neuropsychological Assessments Used in Occupational Therapy
Linda A. Hunt-PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA, Carl J. Bassi-PhD
--The trailmaking test is still effective for people with uncorrected 20/100 vision... good to know. Not that I've ever had anyone actually complete the test effectively yet, but hopefully someday it will happen. Also reiterated the good point that you can't give out a magnifier to correct blur, and you need to do the best, most accurate evaluation of the client to help them be independent.
Relationship Between Handwriting and Keyboarding Performance Among Fast and Slow Adult Keyboarders
Naomi Weintraub-PhD, OTR, Naomi Gilmour-Grill-OT, MSc, Patricia L. (Tamar) Weiss-OT, PhD
--A study after my own heart, since I am a "fast adult keyboarder." I feel that the researchers missed out on not studying the normal speed keyboarders, especially since they kept emphasizing the point that keyboarding is often suggested to poor handwriters in school. It seems logical to me that the kids with poor handwriting who have been told to type may fall into that broad range of 'average' typists, not the extreme fast or slow. I also thought that it was strange they had so few touch-typists in their study- is this not being taught anymore? All due respect to Mavis Beacon, but I had an actual person forcing me to learn to type and covering my hands, which is why I am a fast typist now. A skill that I sometimes curse, due to the RSI I am continually trying to avoid. Even though my work computer is a tablet with a pen, my typing is MUCH faster than my writing, especially my decipherable writing. When I take notes in handwriting, it is printed, and my own crazy shorthand (example- K means children, beh= behavior, dem=dementia, dep= depression, w/sp/2st/3STE/Lr= lives with spouse in 2 story home with 3 steps to enter and a left ascending handrail). Anyway, the study was interesting, could be expanding, and OTs should definitely look at the child's overall motor skills before scrapping handwriting in favor of typing.
Doing, Being, and Becoming: A Family’s Journey Through Perinatal Loss
Mary Forhan-MHSc, OT Reg (Ont)
--This was a heart-wrenching, but poignant inside look at the effect of perinatal loss on the author's family. I found it interesting that the older children continue to discuss the child, despite not meeting their baby brother. In the families that I have known who have suffered perinatal loss, usually it was a firstborn child, or the elder child was too young to comprehend the loss.
The Issue Is ... Facilitating Evidence-Based Practice: Process, Strategies, and Resources
Susan H. Lin-ScD, OTR/L, Susan L. Murphy-ScD, OTR/L, Jennifer C. Robinson-PhD, RN
-- There were some good concrete suggestions for clinicians, employers, educators, researchers, payers, and I think students as well in this article. Well worth a read, and not too long.
Remember- if you're reading journal articles or textbook chapters, it does count for continuing education credits for NBCOT. You are supposed to keep a summary of how it applies to your practice. How's that for some motivation to read?
And please, share your thoughts on "AJOT Thots" or any of the articles contained herewith.