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Critical Reviews™ in Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine
Enhancing Physical Fitness Levels of Paraplegics and Lower Extremity Amputees: A Critical Need
Professor of Industrial Engineering and Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio
Steven J. Scheer
Head, Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio
James M. Plunkett
Cincinnati Veterans Administration Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio
Doctoral Candidates, Industrial Engineering, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio.
Industrial Engineering, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio 45221-0116
A significant number of individuals, including paraplegics and lower extremity amputees, are confined to wheelchairs. Long-term confinement of such individuals leads to adverse health effects, including cardiovascular disease and chronic heart disease. This article reviews published literature pertaining to the adverse health effects of wheelchair confinement among paraplegics and lower extremity amputees. The health benefits of physical exercise to paraplegics and lower extremity amputees are discussed, and it is shown that a critical need exists for further research studies in this area. It is also argued that access to community health and recreational facilities is essential to improving the quality of life of individuals confined to wheelchairs.
SCHLÜSSELWÖRTER: Physical fitness, paraplegics, lower extremity amputees, rehabilitation, recreational activities, quality of life
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