The objective of this article was to determine, using selected computerized gait analysis procedures, whether variation exists in the gait patterns of children with cerebral palsy who exhibit genu recurvatum. This descriptive study compared differences in kinematic, temporal-distance, and electromyographic (EMG) variables between two groups of children with cerebral palsy who exhibited genu recurvatum and age-matched controls. The setting was a motion analysis laboratory. Six children with cerebral palsy who showed genu recurvatum and a control group of four normal children participated in this study. Main outcome measures were hip-knee angle-angle diagrams, knee phase plane plots, knee angle versus time diagrams, stride length, cadence, single-limb support, and EMG data. Through use of hip-knee angle-angle diagrams, knee phase plane plots, and knee angle versus time diagrams, distinctive kinematic patterns emerged, allowing for grouping of subjects. Kinematic measures of knee angle at foot-floor contact and knee angle at greatest extension provided further support for the groups created, as did temporal-distance measures of stride length, cadence, and single-limb support. Analysis of variance procedures for the EMG data showed selected time points in the gait cycle during which differences between the groups were observed. Because differences in kinematic, temporal-distance, and EMG variables existed in this study to warrant grouping into two categories, physical therapists and orthopedic surgeons may need to vary the treatments they introduce dependent on the nature of the child's gait pattern.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation