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  • Author: Jennifer Earl-Boehm x
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Monna Arvinen-Barrow, Nathan Maresh and Jennifer Earl-Boehm

Context: The use of active video games (AVG) as a treatment modality in the rehabilitation context is increasing. However, little is known about the functional outcomes and psychological benefits of such rehabilitation in college athletes with lateral ankle sprains (LASs). Objective: To examine functional outcomes and psychological benefits of AVG-aided rehabilitation program for LAS. Design: A mixed-methods, single-subject case series design. Setting: College athletic training clinic. Patients: Two female college soccer players who sustained LAS (grades I and II) during sport participation. Intervention: A 4-week balance training program. One patient completed balance exercises using AVG, whereas the other patient completed traditional balance exercises. Main Outcome Measures: Several validated instruments were used to evaluate different functional outcomes and psychological factors: balance (Balance Error Scoring System, Star Excursion Balance Test), rehabilitation adherence (Rehabilitation Adherence Measure for Athletic Training), foot and ankle function (Foot and Ankle Ability Measure), perceptions of pain (Visual Analog Scale for pain), perceived readiness to return to sport (Injury-Psychological Readiness to Return to Sport Scale), and mood (Brunel Mood Scale). Results: It appears that the balance training protocols (AVG and traditional balance exercises) were equally effective in restoring patient’s balance to functional levels. Despite very individualistic processes of rehabilitation, the participants’ perceived pain, perceived readiness to return to sport, and mood states were closely linked with objective and subjective functional measures of progress. Conclusions: Based on the results, AVG has the potential to provide more versatility into the static and dynamic postural control exercises typically used following acute LAS. Moreover, the current results support the existing psychological and biopsychosocial theoretical conceptualizations of athletes’ responses to injuries and rehabilitation process.

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Stephen C. Cobb, Mukta N. Joshi, David M. Bazett-Jones and Jennifer E. Earl-Boehm

The effect of time-to-boundary minima selection and stability limit definition was investigated during eyes open and eyes closed condition single-limb stance postural stability. Anteroposterior and mediolateral time-to-boundary were computed using the mean and standard deviation (SD) of all time-to-boundary minima during a trial, and the mean and SD of only the 10 absolute time-to-boundary minima. Time-to-boundary with rectangular, trapezoidal, and multisegmented polygon defined stability limits were also calculated. Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient test results revealed significant medium-large correlations between anteroposterior and mediolateral time-to-boundary scores calculated using both the mean and SD of the 10 absolute time-to-boundary minima and of all the time-to-boundary minima. Friedman test results revealed significant mediolateral time-to-boundary differences between boundary shape definitions. Follow-up Wilcoxon signed rank test results revealed significant differences between the rectangular boundary shape and both the trapezoidal and multisegmented polygon shapes during the eyes open and eyes closed conditions when both the mean and the SD of the time-to-boundary minima were used to represent postural stability. Significant differences were also revealed between the trapezoidal and multisegmented polygon definitions during the eyes open condition when the SD of the time-to-boundary minima was used to represent postural stability. Based on these findings, the overall results (i.e., stable versus unstable participants or groups) of studies computing postural stability using different minima selection can be compared. With respect to boundary shape, the trapezoid or multisegmented polygon shapes may be more appropriate than the rectangular shape as they more closely represent the anatomical shape of the stance foot.

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Karrie L. Hamstra-Wright, Burcu Aydemir, Jennifer Earl-Boehm, Lori Bolgla, Carolyn Emery and Reed Ferber


Hip- and knee-muscle-strengthening programs are effective in improving short-term patient-reported and disease-oriented outcomes in individuals with patellofemoral pain (PFP), but few to no data exist on moderate- to long-term postrehabilitative outcomes. The first purpose of the study was to assess differences in pain, function, strength, and core endurance in individuals with PFP before, after, and 6 mo after successful hip- or knee-muscle-strengthening rehabilitation. The second purpose was to prospectively follow these subjects for PFP recurrence at 6, 12, and 24 mo postrehabilitation.


For 24 mo postrehabilitation, 157 physically active subjects with PFP who reported treatment success were followed. At 6 mo postrehabilitation, pain, function, hip and knee strength, and core endurance were measured. At 6, 12, 18, and 24 mo, PFP recurrence was measured via electronic surveys.


Sixty-eight subjects (43%) returned to the laboratory at 6 mo. Regardless of rehabilitation program, subjects experienced significant improvements in pain and function, strength, and core endurance pre- to postrehabilitation and maintained improvements in pain and function 6 mo postrehabilitation (Visual Analog Scale/Pain—pre 5.12 ± 1.33, post 1.28 ± 1.14, 6 mo 1.68 ± 2.16 cm, P < .05; Anterior Knee Pain Scale/Function—pre 76.38 ± 8.42, post 92.77 ± 7.36, 6 mo 90.27 ± 9.46 points, P < .05). Over the 24 mo postrehabilitation, 5.10% of subjects who responded to the surveys reported PFP recurrence.


The findings support implementing a hip-or knee-muscle-strengthening program for the treatment of PFP. Both programs improve pain, function, strength, and core endurance in the short term with moderate- and long-term benefits of improved pain and function and low PFP recurrence.