Try our beta test site
IMPORTANT: Listing of a study on this site does not reflect endorsement by the National Institutes of Health. Talk with a trusted healthcare professional before volunteering for a study. Read more...

Constraint-Based Therapy to Improve Motor Function in Children With Cerebral Palsy

The recruitment status of this study is unknown. The completion date has passed and the status has not been verified in more than two years.
Verified April 2003 by Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD).
Recruitment status was:  Recruiting
Information provided by:
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) Identifier:
First received: May 21, 2003
Last updated: June 23, 2005
Last verified: April 2003
Pediatric Constraint-Induced (CI) Movement therapy is a rehabilitation program designed to improve motor function in children with partial paralysis. Children with cerebral palsy may have one arm that has significantly greater function (good arm) than the other (bad arm). Restricting the use of the good arm may improve the use of the bad arm. In pediatric CI therapy, the good arm is put in a sling to force increased use of the bad arm. The bad arm is also trained each day for several weeks. This study will test the ability of pediatric CI therapy to improve motor function in children with cerebral palsy.

Condition Intervention Phase
Cerebral Palsy
Motor Deficits
Behavioral: Pediatric Constraint-Induced Movement therapy
Behavioral: Conventional pediatric motor rehabilitation therapy
Phase 2

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Factorial Assignment
Masking: Single Blind
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Randomized Controlled Trial of Pediatric CI Therapy

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD):

Estimated Enrollment: 52
Study Start Date: September 2002
Estimated Study Completion Date: September 2006
Detailed Description:

Cerebral palsy afflicts at least two in 1,000 children in the United States and approximately 2,000,000 children worldwide. Behavioral techniques that impact the plasticity of the nervous system need to be incorporated into practical, evidence-based therapeutic interventions for this condition.

CI therapy was derived from basic research with animal and human subjects. Randomized, controlled studies indicate that it can substantially reduce the motor deficit of adult patients with mild to moderately severe chronic strokes and can increase their independence over a period of years. CI therapy involves motor restriction of the less affected upper extremity for a period of 2 to 3 weeks while concurrently training the more affected upper limb. This gives rise to concentrated, repetitive use of the more affected extremity. In adults, CI therapy has lead to a large increase in use-dependent cortical reorganization involving the recruitment of substantial new regions of the brain in the innervation of more affected extremity movement.

The study will evaluate CI therapy in a pediatric population. The study will test whether pediatric CI therapy can promote new and improved motor behavior in young children with hemiparesis associated with cerebral palsy. Pediatric CI therapy involves total restraint of the unaffected upper extremity with simultaneous repetitive use of the affected extremity for 6 hours/day for 21 consecutive days.

Fifty-two children ages 2 to 6 years old with hemiparetic cerebral palsy will be randomly assigned to either the pediatric CI therapy group or to a control group. The control group will receive standard rehabilitation therapy. All children will have a complete medical evaluation with emphasis on motor function prior to treatment initiation. Children will undergo follow-up testing at 1, 6, and 12 months post-treatment. The primary study assessment tools are the Pediatric Developmental Motor Scales - II (PDMS-II), DASI – II, Bayley Developmental Skills Test, Pediatric Motor Activity Log (PMAL), Child Arm Use Test (CAUT), and Emerging Behavior Scale (EBS).


Ages Eligible for Study:   2 Years to 6 Years   (Child)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria

  • Clinical diagnosis of hemiparetic cerebral palsy consistent with criteria in Swaiman and Russman (1999) and Badawi et al. (1998)
  • Recommended for participation in pediatric rehabilitation and/or early intervention
  • Lives within 50 miles of the Civitan Center at University of Alabama at Birmingham or the family is willing to temporarily relocate to the Birmingham area for treatment

Exclusion Criteria

  • Profound bilateral hearing loss with the use of hearing aids
  • Severe visual impairment
  • Serious seizure disorder or uncontrolled seizures
  • Genetic and syndromic conditions historically excluded for CP registries
  • Familial Spastic Paraplegia
  • Ataxic Cerebral Palsy
  • Diagnosis of Pervasive Developmental Disability or autism
  • Serious or recurring medical complications
  • Scheduled for surgery within 12 months of study entry
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00061139

Contact: Edward Taub, PhD 205-934-2471

United States, Alabama
University of Alabama at Birmingham Recruiting
Birmingham, Alabama, United States, 35294
Contact: Edward Taub, PhD    205-934-2471   
Principal Investigator: Edward Taub, PhD         
Sponsors and Collaborators
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
Principal Investigator: Edward Taub, PhD University of Alabama at Birmingham
  More Information Identifier: NCT00061139     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: R01HD040692 ( US NIH Grant/Contract Award Number )
Study First Received: May 21, 2003
Last Updated: June 23, 2005

Keywords provided by Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD):
Cerebral palsy
Pediatric CI therapy
Upper extremity
Limb restraint

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Cerebral Palsy
Brain Damage, Chronic
Brain Diseases
Central Nervous System Diseases
Nervous System Diseases processed this record on May 25, 2017