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Multicenter Schroth Exercise Trial for Scoliosis (MultiSETS)

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ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01610908
Recruitment Status : Unknown
Verified May 2015 by University of Alberta.
Recruitment status was:  Recruiting
First Posted : June 4, 2012
Last Update Posted : May 28, 2015
Information provided by (Responsible Party):

Study Description
Brief Summary:

The primary aim of this multicenter randomized controlled trial is to compare the effect of a 6 month "Schroth exercise program combined with standard-of-care" to "standard-of-care alone" on scoliosis curve severity measured using the Cobb angle.

Secondary aims include:

  1. To determine the effect of Schroth exercises at 6 months on secondary outcomes including quality-of-life, spinal appearance, objective posture and spinal muscle endurance measurements.
  2. To determine the efficacy of 6 months of Schroth therapy offered to control participants after completing 6 months in the standard-of care group (using subjects as their own controls)
  3. To determine if the effects of the 6 months supervised Schroth exercise program can be maintained after supervised therapy is terminated.

At Hopital Ste-Justine, the following secondary aims will be pursued to examine the preliminary evidence about the effect of Global Postural Re-education (to satisfy the local ethics committee request because Global Postural Re-education exercises were offered routinely to patients at that institution prior to the trial).

A. To compare the effect and to quantify the treatment effect sizes of 6 months of "Global Postural Re-education exercises with North American standard Care consisting of only observation and bracing" to "Schroth exercises combined with North American standard care" and to "North American standard care alone" on scoliosis curve severity measured using the Cobb angle.

B. To estimate the effect and quantify the treatment effect sizes of 6 months of "Global Postural Re-education exercises with North American standard Care" to "Schroth exercises combined with North American standard care" and to "North American standard care alone" on outcomes including quality-of-life, perceived spinal appearance, objective posture and spinal muscle endurance measurements.

C. To determine if the effects of "Global Postural Re-education exercises with North American standard Care" can be maintained after discontinuing supervision.

D. To estimate the feasibility of conducting a randomized trial focused on Global Postural Re-education exercises by quantifying enrollment rates, attendance at scheduled exercise sessions and compliance with the home exercises prescribed.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Scoliosis Other: The Schroth exercises treatment Other: Global Postural Re-Education Phase 2

  Show Detailed Description

Study Design

Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Estimated Enrollment : 258 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment
Masking: Double (Investigator, Outcomes Assessor)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: A Multicenter Randomized Controlled Trial to Compare the Effect of Schroth Exercises to Standard Care on Curve Characteristics, Posture, and Quality Of Life in Adolescents With Idiopathic Scoliosis
Study Start Date : April 2011
Estimated Primary Completion Date : August 2016
Estimated Study Completion Date : January 2017

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

U.S. FDA Resources

Arms and Interventions

Arm Intervention/treatment
Experimental: Schroth exercises
The experimental group receives the Schroth exercises treatment.Patients in this arm receive 5 individual sessions with a Schroth therapist for introduction to the approach. They they receive a home program consisting of 3-4 exercises to do at home everyday for 30-45 minutes. They come to weekly group therapy sessions to where exercise prescription is adjusted.
Other: The Schroth exercises treatment

The Schroth approach consists of 3D scoliosis-specific exercises based on sensorimotor and kinesthetic principles. The goal of Schroth exercises is to teach patients to consciously maintain the correct posture in daily living activities in order to improve the curve, pain, and self-image. To achieve this goal, Schroth exercises focus on endurance and strength training of postural muscles. Schroth exercises also aim to improve posture motor control by repeating corrective movements with progressively less feedback and less passive support.

Dosage: 5 individual 1-hour long sessions, continued with the daily 45 minutes home exercise program. In addition, patients are required to come weekly for 1-hour long group sessions over the span of 6 months.

Other Names:
  • Scoliosis specific exercises.
  • The Schroth Approach.
No Intervention: Standard of care
"The Standard of care" is a control group that will continue receiving the standard North American treatment prescribed by a surgeon (observation or brace [if meeting SRS criteria]) for of 6 months. After 6 months, the participants will receive the Schroth exercises intervention for 6 months.
Active Comparator: Global Postural Re-education (Montréal)

The active group (in Montréal only) receives the Global Postural Re-Education exercises treatment.Patients in this arm come to weekly individual 1 hour long therapy sessions where exercise prescription is adjusted. Selection of posture exercises is based on scoliosis type, on muscular chain stiffness associated with posture alterations and on position increasing scoliosis or pain (lying, sitting, standing).

They they receive a 15-min home program consisting of 1 to 2 exercises to do at home everyday.

Other: Global Postural Re-Education
The 6-month supervised Global Postural Re-education intervention involves active movements and postures aimed at realigning joints, stretching shortened muscles and enhancing the contraction of antagonist muscles, thus avoiding postural asymmetry. These postures imply an active participation of the patient. Global Postural Re-education includes eight therapeutic postures, lying, sitting or standing, held for 15/20 min. each. Variously combinations are used during sessions chosen on based on the amount of pain, load capacity, age of the patient, and muscle chains to be stretched. Static and dynamic functions are also employed for about five minutes each sessions to use the recovered flexibility in functional activities Dosage: Weekly individual 1-hour long sessions, with daily 15 minutes home exercise program over 6 months.
Other Names:
  • GPR
  • Ré-éducation posturale globale

Outcome Measures

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Change in Cobb angle [ Time Frame: From baseline to 6 months ]
    The angle from a posterior anterior full spine radiographs between the upper endplate of the upper end vertebra of the largest curve and the lower endplate of the lower end vertebra from the largest curve.

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Change in Vertebral rotation [ Time Frame: Change from baseline to 6 months ]
    Using a posterior-anterior radiograph and a semi-automated algorithm in Matlab the rotation of the most rotated vertebra in the curve will be extracted. The algorithm relies on the semi-automated identification of the position of the the pedicles vs the edges of the vertebral body.

  2. Change in Back muscle endurance [ Time Frame: From baseline, to 3 months and to 6 months follow-ups ]
    Using Sørensen back muscle endurance test, we record the time until fatigue to maintain the torso unsupported from the waist up horizontally against gravity with the arms crossed against the chest and the head and neck maintained aligned with the trunk. Leg are maintained firmly against the bed using gait belts tightened against a treatment table. The test stops if patients lose the ability to maintain the position after one reminder for good form or if they personally ask to stop because of pain or fatigue.

  3. Change in Scoliosis Research Society-22r questionnaire scores [ Time Frame: From baseline, to 3 months and to 6 months follow-ups ]
    The Scoliosis Research Society-22r questionnaire is available from SRS.org. It is a self-reported tools assessing self-image, function, pain, mental health with 5 questions each and satisfaction with care with 2 questions. A total score is also available based on all 22 questions.

  4. Change in Spinal Appearance Questionnaire scores [ Time Frame: From baseline, to 3, and to 6 months ]

    The Spinal Appearance Questionnaire measures patients' perception of their spinal deformity using standardized drawings and questions.

    The new version of the Spinal Appearance Questionnaire containing 20 items will be used in this study, which addresses the following domains: General (items 9, 10, and 19), Curve (item 1), Prominence (items 2 and 3), Trunk shift (item 4 and 5), Waist (items 11, 12, and 13), Shoulders (items 6 and 16), Kyphosis (item 7), Chest (items 14 and 15) and Surgical scar (item 17). In scoring, we will use all domains, except Kyphosis and Surgical scar, because these domains are not relevant to the subjects in this study.

  5. Global rating of change relative to baseline [ Time Frame: at 3 and at 6 months ]
    A 15-point global rating scale will be used to assess the patient's perceived change over time. The scale ranges from -7 (a very great deal worse) to +7 (a very great deal better).

  6. Change in Self-efficacy [ Time Frame: From baseline, to 3 and to 6 months ]
    This questionnaire measures self-efficacy for overcoming barriers to physical activity (defined as corrective exercise activities) using 8 items rated from 1 (Disagree a lot) to 5 (Agree a lot).

  7. Change in numeric pain ratings and diagram [ Time Frame: From baseline, to 3 and to 6 months ]
    A scale from 0 (no pain) to 10 (worst imaginable pain) will assess current, best, worst pain intensity in the last 24 hours. A body pain diagram will help categorize the location of symptoms.

  8. Change in surface topography assessment of posture [ Time Frame: From baseline, to 3 and to 6 months ]

    Four Laser Scanners (Edmonton) and 4 optical scanners ( Montréal and Calgary) are used to capture full-torso scans. Subjects are positioned in a standard frame, and 18 reference points marked. Parameters are extracted by digitizing 15 landmarks. Parameters quantifying the external back surface deformity are: decompensation, cosmetic score (combines the shoulder angle, scapula angle and waist asymmetry), in the coronal plane, the deformity in the axial plane index, Hump Sum, trunk twist in the transverse plane and kyphotic and lumbar angles in the sagittal plane.

    From full torso scans are: lateral deviation of centroid, and back surface rotation.

Eligibility Criteria

Information from the National Library of Medicine

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Ages Eligible for Study:   10 Years to 16 Years   (Child)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   Female
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • adolescent idiopathic scoliosis
  • Females
  • 10° to 45° according to Cobb (scoliosis curve)
  • with or without a brace
  • ability to travel weekly to our lab
  • skeletal maturity measured by Risser (0-3)

Exclusion Criteria:

  • other type of scoliosis
  • patients with curves > 50°
  • surgical candidates
  • patients who have had a corrective spinal surgery
  • out-of town candidates, without possibility to travel to our lab
Contacts and Locations

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier (NCT number): NCT01610908

Contact: Eric C Parent, PhD, PT 780-492-8889 eparent@ualberta.ca
Contact: Carole Fortin, PhD, PT 514 374-1710 ext 8136 carole.fortin@recherche-ste-justine.qc.ca

Canada, Alberta
Alberta Children Hospital Not yet recruiting
Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T3B 6A8
Contact: David Parsons, MD FRCSC       David.Parsons@albertahealthservices.ca   
University of Alberta, Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine, Dept. Physical Therapy Recruiting
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, T6G2G4
Contact: Eric C Parent, PhD    780-492-8889    eparent@ualberta.ca   
Principal Investigator: Eric C Parent, PhD, PT         
Canada, Quebec
CHU Ste-Justine Recruiting
Montréal, Quebec, Canada, H3T 1C5
Contact: Carole Fortin, PT, Ph.D.    514 374-1710 ext 8136    carole.fortin@recherche-ste-justine.qc.ca   
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of Alberta
Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation
Scoliosis Research Society
SickKids Foundation CIHR Institute of Human Development, Child and Youth Health
Principal Investigator: Eric C Parent, PT, MSc, PhD University of Alberta
More Information

Parent EC, Schreiber S, Hedden D, Moreau M. The effect of a 6-month Schroth exercise program: a pilot study using subjects as their own controls. Scoliosis. 2013;8(Suppl 2):045.
Schreiber S, Parent EC, Hedden DM, Moreau M, Hill D, Watkins EM. The effects of a 6-month Schroth intervention for Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis (AIS): preliminary analysis of an ongoing randomized controlled trial. Scoliosis. 2013;8(Suppl 2):O44.
Schreiber S, Parent E, Hedden D, Moreau MJ. Clinical Significance of The Effect of A Six-Months Schroth Exercise Intervention in Adolescents with Idiopathic Scoliosis. 2015 Annual Meeting Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America (POSNA), e-poster #18, p391, 2015
Watkins E, Bosnjak S, Parent E. Algorithms to prescribe Schroth exercises for each of four Schroth curve types. Scoliosis. 2012 Jan 27;7 Suppl 1:P22.
Schreiber S, Parent E, Watkins E, Hedden D. An algorithm for determining scoliosis curve type according to Schroth. Scoliosis. 2012 Jan 27;7 Suppl 1:O53.

Publications automatically indexed to this study by ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier (NCT Number):
Responsible Party: University of Alberta
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01610908     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: Pro00043397
First Posted: June 4, 2012    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: May 28, 2015
Last Verified: May 2015

Keywords provided by University of Alberta:
Conservative treatment

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Spinal Curvatures
Spinal Diseases
Bone Diseases
Musculoskeletal Diseases