Evolution of disability in traffic accident victims in rehabilitation, characterized by the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF)

Ligia Regina de Oliveira, Ana Paula Fontes da Silva Macedo, Cássia Maria Buchalla, João Henrique Gurtler Scatena


Introduction: The International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) enables monitoring of the clinical evolution of a patient. Objective: This study aimed to characterize the evolution of disabilities in patients undergoing physical therapy following traffic accidents, using the ICF. Methods: A longitudinal study of 53 accident victims was conducted between April and October 2010, in a rehabilitation unit in the capital of Mato Grosso State, Brazil. Data from physical therapy evaluation were collected in 2 stages and coded by the ICF. Results: The average time between evaluation and reevaluation was 73.4 days. The evolution of functional impairment demonstrated a reduction in the number of patients with deficits, except for muscle tone functions. On initial evaluation, 90.6% had difficulty with sensory functions and pain, varying from mild to complete, decreasing to 67.9% on reevaluation, with pain still mostly present. Almost all patients (96.2%) had a disability of neuromusculoskeletal and movement related functions on initial assessment, with a decrease to 15.7% of patients on reevaluation. The greatest improvements were observed in the categories of muscle strength (36.7%) and gait pattern (30.6%). On reevaluation, improvement was also observed regarding perceived impairment of body structures, especially for those with severe and complete disability. Conclusion: The study confirmed a reduction in the percentage of patients with some form of disability, and positive development in functional capacity. The use of ICF enabled evaluation of physical disabilities and monitoring of the evolution of patients undergoing physical therapy.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/1980-5918.030.002.AO07


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