Effects of an Innovative Telerehabilitation Intervention for People With Parkinson's Disease on Quality of Life, Motor, and Non-motor Abilities

HEAD study group, Sara Isernia, Sonia Di Tella, Chiara Pagliari, Johanna Jonsdottir, Carlotta Castiglioni, Patrizia Gindri, Marco Salza, Cristina Gramigna, Giovanna Palumbo, Franco Molteni, Francesca Baglio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Parkinson's disease (PD) often leads to multifactorial motor and non-motor disabilities with resultant social restrictions. Continuity of care in this pathology, including a tailored home rehabilitation, is crucial to improve or maintain the quality of life for patients. The aim of this multicenter study was to test in a pilot sample of PD patients the efficiency and efficacy of the Human Empowerment Aging and Disability (HEAD) program. The virtual reality HEAD program was administered in two consecutive phases: (1) in clinic (ClinicHEAD, 12 45-minutes sessions, 3 sessions/week); (2) at home (HomeHEAD, 60 45-minutes sessions, 5 sessions/week). Thirty-one PD outpatients were enrolled [mean age (SD) = 66.84 (9.13)]. All patients performed ClinicHEAD, and after allocation (ratio 1:2) were assigned to the HomeHEAD or the Usual Care (UC) group. Motor, cognitive and behavioral outcome measures were assessed at enrollment (T0), at hospital discharge (T1), at 4 (T2) and 7 (T3) months after baseline. After ClinicHEAD (T1 vs. T0 comparison) a significant (p < 0.05) improvement in functional mobility, balance, upper limb mobility, global cognitive function, memory, quality of life and psychological well-being was observed. After the HomeHEAD intervention there was an additional enhancement for upper limb mobility. At T3 follow-up, the UC group that did not continue the HEAD program at home showed a worsening with respect to the HomeHEAD group in balance and functional mobility. Furthermore, in the HomeHEAD group, a positive association was observed between adherence, mental and physical health (SF-12). A trend was also registered between adherence and positive affect. The digital health patient-tailored rehabilitation program resulted in improving motor and non-motor abilities and quality of life in clinical setting, enhancing the motor function in telerehabilitation at home, and maintaining the non-motor abilities and quality of life at follow-up. In the near future, people with PD can be supported also at home with individualized rehabilitation strategies for a better quality of life and wellbeing along with lower costs for society.

Original languageEnglish
Article number846
JournalFrontiers in Neurology
Volume11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 13 2020

Keywords

  • continuity of care
  • digital health
  • nervous system disease
  • Parkinson's disease
  • quality of life
  • rehabilitation
  • technology
  • telerehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

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