Patients' perceptions of the benefits and problems of using the ActiGait implanted drop-foot stimulator
Jane H. Burridge, Morten Haugland, Birgit Larsen , Niels Svaneborg, Helle K. Iversen, P Brøgger Christensen, Ruth M. Pickering, Thomas Sinkjaer
Objective: To evaluate patients' perceptions of the benefits and problems associated with using the ActiGait implanted drop-foot stimulator
Method: Thirteen participants who had suffered a stroke at least 6 months prior to recruitment, had a drop-foot that affected walking and had taken part in a trial in which an ActiGait drop-foot stimulator had been implanted, completed a postal questionnaire.
Results: Users agreed that the ActiGait had a positive effect on walking; they used it regularly and had little difficulty with putting it on and taking it off. Reliability was a greater problem at 90 days than at the final assessment. Ten of the 13 responders either agreed or strongly agreed with the statement that the ActiGait improved their quality of life at 90 days and 9 out of 12 at the final assessment: 11 of the 12 respondents would recommend the ActiGait to others.
Discussion and conclusion: From the users' perspective the ActiGait improved walking, it was reported to be used regularly and it appeared to be easier to use than a surface system. Users were equivocal about the reliability of the system at 90 days, but at the final assessment reliability had improved.