In Step With Pediatric Hypotonia – 2014
Sponsored by an educational grant from SureStep
Mobility and More
At the most basic level, mobility is about getting from point A to point B. But, for many children with hypotonia, it’s about so much more.
It’s about independence. It’s about confidence. It’s about maintaining strength, fitness, and healthy bones. It’s about not being excluded from activities enjoyed by their typically developing peers.
And improved mobility may have even more benefits in those children whose hypotonia is associated with social and behavioral developmental delays. New research has identified an association between motor skills and sociobehavioral milestones in children with autism spectrum disorder, who often present with hypotonia (see “The Importance of Gross Motor Skills,” page 12).
This suggests that early intervention to improve gross motor skills—including orthotic devices and physical therapy—may also help certain children interact more comfortably with others. That won’t come as a surprise to the clinicians and parents who have personally seen it happen.
This special issue is filled with evidence-based information and personal success stories illustrating how effective interventions can enhance mobility in children with hypotonia. That could literally be the first step toward drastically improving a child’s quality of life. Not to mention their ability to get from point A to point B.
By Jordana Bieze Foster, Editor
For this family, one tiny extra chromosome led to a journey of self discovery – When our son was born, we prayed for a healthy baby with 10 fingers and 10 toes. Our prayers were answered. Three years later, those same prayers were said for baby number two. And, once again, our prayers were answered.
By Suzi Klimek
Diagnostic challenges should not delay clinical intervention – Hypotonia, or abnormally low muscle tone, is by itself not a disorder but a symptom of an enormous array of issues—many of which can be difficult to diagnose accurately.
By Christina Hall Nettles
Quantifying the effects of hypotonia starts in the clinic – Effective management of children with hypotonia requires an understanding of how the condition affects gait. Clinicians typically rely on their professional experience when discussing the effects of hypotonia on gait in pediatric patients, partly because they trust that experience…
By Cary Groner
Early intervention can help provide a solid foundation – Many kids with Down syndrome, autism, and other neurological conditions may experience biomechanical limitations in the form of delayed development of gross motor skills. One of the drivers of that delay can be hypotonia.
By Shalmali Pal
New research underscores years of positive clinical results – When it comes to orthotic management of pediatric patients with hypotonia, the medical literature is only beginning to document the effectiveness that clinicians have been reporting anecdotally for years.
By Cary Groner
Each child in this case series was assessed every other week for 16 weeks (12 weeks for one patient who moved out of state) to determine mastery of items 23, 26-28, 30-39, 41, 42, and 45 (ranging from “pull to stand” to “run”) on the Peabody Developmental Motor Scale. Test instructions were modified as needed for children to understand them …
By Megan Smith, CO
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SureStep shoes have been custom designed specifically for children who wear orthoses. Their wider, deeper heel, toe box and instep allow for adequate room and a comfortable fit. The unique tread promotes intrinsic movement and flexibility while a special “cut-line” allows for easy shoe modifications.