Purpose: Japan is now the world's first ‘super-ageing’ society. We analysed the effect of occupational therapy (OT) sessions in addressing issues related to the elderly population, in comparison with other services.
Methods: We studied 136 elderly patients receiving at-home care. Seventy-four patients received weekly OT and 62 did not. We assessed quality of life (QOL) and its trajectory over 1 year using the Philadelphia Geriatric Center Morale Scale (PGC) to quantify changes in QOL and the Function Independence Measure (FIM) to measure changes in activities of daily living.
Results: Patient progress fell within five different trajectories, which was influenced by psychosocial factors. OT correlated with significantly greater improvement in PGC and FIM scores than other home care services.
Conclusion: There is a significant benefit associated with OT and is expected to become increasingly more important in the growing elderly population. Tailoring of OT will be required to benefit those trajectory groups that showed unsatisfactory outcomes.
Several studies have been implemented on home-visit occupational therapy based on activities or occupations for clients with dementia and their caregivers, but all have been conducted abroad; none have taken place in Japan. Therefore, we performed a pilot study of the effectiveness of an occupation-based home-visit program for clients with dementia and their caregivers using single cohort design. The results of our analysis of participants' (n = 9) data indicated that the home-visit program could improve the behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia, particularly apathy, among clients with dementia, as well as caregivers' needs or what caregivers expected of clients. Additionally, the program tended to decrease caregivers' care burden. The implications of the study are discussed in light of further research on this program.
The hypothesis in this study was tested by conducting EMG experiments comparing the variability in muscle activity during repetitive reaching movements in hemiplegic patients and healthy subjects. The present study investigated the characteristics of reaching movements in hemiplegic patients using the variability in average electromyogram (EMG) value. We studied 21 right-handed stroke patients with left-sided hemiparesis and 14 right-handed healthy control subjects. Post-stroke patients (hemiplegic group) and normal subjects (control group) repeated a reaching movement 10 times. The variability in average EMG value of each muscle was defined as the average standard deviation of the average rectified values (nARV-SDave). During the reaching movements, the nARV-SDave values was significantly higher in the hemiparesis group than in the control group for the biceps and triceps brachii (P < 0.05). In the hemiparesis group, significant negative correlations between the variability in nARV-SDave values and the Fugl-Meyer assessment scores were observed in all muscle types (rs = −0.46 to −0.76; P < 0.05, P < 0.01). This study identified a direct relationship between the variability in muscle activity and the severity of motor function deficit in post-stroke patients. The selective impact on the biceps and triceps were related to the nature of the reaching task.
Objective: Amusement was introduced for one month and interaction among the elderly and its influence on their physiological function and sleep were investigated. Methods: The subjects were 9 elderly females (age: 89.0 ± 4.7 years old) who periodically visited a day care service center for the elderly. The survey was performed between October 2015 and December 2015. For the amusement, Blackjack was introduced. The survey period was comprised of 3 amusement introduction periods: pre-amusement, and one week and one month after amusement introduction. In each period, the heart rate (HR), sympathetic nerve activity (CSI), and parasympathetic nerve activity (CVI) were measured during amusement, and the difference in the salivary amylase level between before and after amusement was determined. The sleep efficiency and sleeping hours were measured at night of the days with amusement. Repeated measures one-way ANOVA was performed regarding the survey period as a factor and HR, CSI, CVI, sleep efficiency, sleeping hours, and difference in the amylase level as dependent variables. Results: Significant amusement-induced changes were noted in the CVI and salivary amylase level. These were significantly lower at one month after amusement introduction than those in pre-amusement. Conclusion: Amusement-induced laughing and regret or interaction through the amusement influenced their autonomic nerve system and they may have felt comfortable.
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