Objective: To review studies assessing the efficacy of occupational therapy interventions on quality of life in patients with Parkinson's disease.
Method: We followed the international guidelines of the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses checklist. Databases (PubMed, Physiotherapy Evidence Database, OTsekeer, Scopus, Cinhal, and Web of Science) were searched to identify randomized controlled trials of occupational therapy interventions in patients with Parkinson's disease up to 2019 and with no restriction on language. The primary outcome of the meta-analysis was the evaluation of quality of life following occupational therapy interventions. Because of the heterogeneity of the studies, we examined the data by using a random effect model.
Results: We identified 15 randomized controlled trials that met the inclusion criteria, and 4 of these were included in the meta-analysis. Studies with a follow-up of 2 to 3 months showed that occupational therapy interventions significantly improved the quality of life in patients with Parkinson's disease, with a mean difference of -2.08 (95% confidence interval, -2.52 to -1.64; P < 0.00001). Studies reporting a longer follow-up (6-12 months) also showed that occupational therapy interventions improved the quality of life, with a mean difference of -2.56 (95% confidence interval, -3.52 to -1.61; P < 0.00001).
Conclusion: Different occupational therapy interventions may be effective in improving the quality of life in patients with Parkinson's disease. However, because of the limited number of studies available, the strength of the evidence should be considered moderate.