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  • Down Syndrome Clinical Summary Discussion Now Available for Viewing

    The clinical summary on Down syndrome available on PTNow is not only a great resource on its own, it's also a great springboard for lively discussion. See for yourself by checking out the video from a recent Google+ "hangout" sponsored by PTNow.

    In a discussion that ranged from the use of to the need for "culture change" in attitudes about physical activity and obesity, to the importance of communicating appropriate motor milestones to the families of children with Down syndrome, moderator Mary Tischio Blackinton, PT, EdD, CEEAA, GCS, clinical summary author Kathy Martin, PT, DHS, and pediatric physical therapist and educator Tracy Stoner, PT, DPT, PCS, connected the dots between evidence resources and day-to-day practice.

    The panel answered presubmitted questions, but also set aside time to provide an overview of the summary, and the ways the summary's content is enriched through PTNow, which allows readers to access references and other supporting materials while reading the summary itself. More on the discussion—including information about a future presentation focused on orthotics—can be found at the PTNow blog.

    Free Webinar to Focus on Prevention and Interprofessional Education

    Physical therapists (PTs) and physical therapist assistants (PTAs) have an opportunity to learn how 2 emerging issues can intersect during an upcoming webinar on prevention curricula in interprofessional education.

    The September 9 webinar, sponsored by the federal government's Healthy People 2020 initiative, will focus on ways to access resources for developing curricula and collaborative learning experiences to improve prevention and population health education across various health professions. Faculty from the University of Texas Medical Branch and Duke University will be on hand to discuss their own experiences with expanding education in these areas. The 90-minute presentation will begin at 1 pm ET.

    The webinar is free, and participants can register online. Healthy People 2020 also archives its webinars for viewing at a later time.

    PT Researcher Lets Seniors Take a Trip

    A new method being tested in Chicago aims to "vaccinate" individuals who are elderly against falls—by tripping them.

    Actually it's not as weird as it sounds. The Associated Press (AP) reports that University of Illinois-Chicago researcher and physical therapy professor Clive Pai, PT, PhD is using a specially-built moving walkway that can suddenly shift under a user's feet, tripping them up and—Pai hopes—triggering subconscious learning that will help prevent future falls. Users are outfitted with a special harness that prevents them from actually falling during the training.

    The AP story quotes Pai as saying that the approach could work as a kind of "vaccine against falls."

    Pai's preliminary research on the approach was published in the September 2013 issue of the Journal of Biomechanics (abstract only available for free). In that study, he exposed 73 community-dwelling older adults to 24 slip exposures, and concluded that the "perturbation training did alter [their] spontaneous gait pattern," which "enabled them to improve their volitional control of stability and their resistance to unpredictable and unpreventable slip-related postural disturbance."

    Pai's research is continuing under a 5-year grant from the National Institute on Aging, according to the AP report. The grant-funded project aims to include 300 participants.

     Research-related stories featured in PT in Motion News are intended to highlight a topic of interest only and do not constitute an endorsement by APTA. For synthesized research and evidence-based practice information, visit the association's PTNow website.