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  • New in the Literature: Physical Therapy on Balance in People With Multiple Sclerosis (J Rehabil Med. 2012. Sept 19. [Epub ahead of print])

    Authors of a meta-analysis published in the Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine report that their findings indicate small, but significant, effects of physical therapy on balance in people with multiple sclerosis who have a mild to moderate level of disability.

    A systematic literature search was conducted in Medline, Cinahl, Embase, and PEDro, both electronically and manually up to March 2011. The authors selected randomized controlled trials of physical therapy interventions in people with multiple sclerosis, with an outcome measure linked to the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health category "changing and maintaining body position." The quality of studies was determined by the van Tulder criteria. Meta-analyses were performed in subgroups according to the intervention.

    Of the 233 full-text papers screened, 11 studies were included in a qualitative analysis and 7 in a meta-analysis. The methodological quality of the studies ranged from poor to moderate. Low evidence was found for the efficacy of specific balance exercises, physical therapy based on an individualized problem-solving approach, and resistance and aerobic exercises on improving balance among ambulatory people with multiple sclerosis.

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