Factors Associated with Mobility Device Prescription in Older Adults with Spinal Cord  Injury/Dysfunction (SCI/D)
Gurpreet Kaur, MPT (candidate)1 ; Amol M Karmarkar, PhD6 ; Brad E. Dicianno, MD, MS 2-5 ; Rosemarie Cooper, MPT, ATP 2-4 ; and Rory A Cooper, PhD 2-4
1 Indian Spinal Injury Center, New Delhi, India; 2 Human Engineering Research Laboratories, Department of Veterans Affairs, Pittsburgh, PA; 3 Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology, University of Pittsburgh; 4 Center For Assistive Technology, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA; 5 Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, University of Pittsburgh. 6 Division of Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Texas Medical Branch


The purpose of this study was to identify associations between demographics, health related characteristics, and the type of wheelchairs prescribed from the Center for Assistive Technology (CAT) to older adults (age>60) with SCI/D during the years 2007 and 2008. We evaluated for associations within 49 cases of individuals with SCI/D and found that spinal stenosis (47%, n=23) is the primary sub-category of SCI/D among the older population. Prescription of power wheelchairs was significantly higher than that of manual wheelchairs in this population (94% vs. 6%). Significant associations exist between categorical variables: onset of injury (p=.016), primary diagnosis (p=.018), specific SCI (p=.043), client preference for device (p<.001), and the type of mobility device prescribed from CAT. Understanding demographics, health related characteristics and factors associated with the type of prescribed device in older adults with SCI/D can enable clinicians to accurately match the individuals with appropriate mobility device, ensuring standardization and quality in devices prescription.


Older adults, Spinal Cord Injury/Dysfunction, Wheelchairs.


The study was funded by National Science Foundation, Project EEC 0552351.

Contact information:

Gurpreet Kaur, MPT (candidate), Indian Spinal Injuries Center, New Delhi, India
Phone: 00-91-9911069998, Email:gkgurpreetarora@gmail.com.

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