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Table 2 The evidence synthesis.

From: Effectiveness of physical therapy interventions for children with cerebral palsy: A systematic review

Study Intervention vs. control Outcome measure Difference between the groups
Moderate evidence on effectiveness
Upper extremity treatment (1 high-quality trial)
Wallen et al [40] OT vs. no treatment Goal Attainment Scale
Range of motion in active supination
6 mo: p = 0.054
6 mo: p = 0.008
Hallam [43] Prehensile hand treatment+NDT vs. NDT (twice a week) vs. NDT (once a week) GMDS developmental quotient p < 0.002*
Constraint induced (CI) therapy (2 lower-quality trials)
Charles et al [52] CI therapy with a sling vs. no therapy Amount of hand use†
Quality of hand use†
1 wk: effect size 0.3, p < .01
1, 6 mo: effect size 0.2, p < 0.01
Taub et al [53] CI therapy with a cast vs. early intervention program Amount of hand use‡
Quality of hand use‡
3 wk: p < 0.0001
3 wk: p < 0.0001
Moderate evidence on ineffectiveness
Strength training (4 lower-quality trials with walking speed, and 2 lower-quality trials with stride length as an outcome)
Liao et al [44] Home-based loaded sit-to-stand exercise vs. no training Self-selected walking speed 6 wk: NS
Dodd et al [48] Home-based strength training vs. no training Self-selected walking speed 6, 18 wk: NS
Patikas et al [45] Strength training vs. no training Walking speed
Stride length
9 mo: NS
9 mo: NS
Unger et al [47] Circuit training vs. no training Walking speed
Stride length
9 wk: NS
9 wk: NS
Conflicting evidence
Strength training (3 lower-quality trials with GMFM as an outcome)
Liao et al [44] Home-based loaded sit-to-stand exercise vs. no training GMFM 6 wk: effect size 1.17, p = 0.02
Patikas et al [46] Home-based strength training vs. no training GMFM 12 mo: NS
Dodd et al [48] Home-based strength training vs. no training GMFM 6, 18 wk: NS
  1. mo = months, wk = weeks, GMDF = Griffith's Mental Developmental Scales, GMFM = Gross Motor Function Measure,
  2. * For the prehensile hand treatment+NDT and extra NDT groups compared to NDT group,
  3. † Caregiver Functional Use Survey (14 items, 6-point Likert scale),
  4. ‡ Paediatric Motor Activity Log (22 items, scale 0–5)