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Open AccessArticle

Evaluation of Fitness and the Balance Levels of Children with a Diagnosis of Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis: A Pilot Study

1
Department of Psychology and Educational Science, University of Palermo, 90133 Palermo, Italy
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Department of Science for the Promotion of Health and Infant Maternal “G. D’Alessandro”, University of Palermo, 90133 Palermo, Italy
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Posturalab Italy, 90131 Palermo, Italy
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Regional Sport School of Sicily CONI (Olympic National Italian Committee), 90141 Palermo, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(7), 806; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph14070806
Received: 22 May 2017 / Revised: 14 July 2017 / Accepted: 16 July 2017 / Published: 19 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Health Behavior, Chronic Disease and Health Promotion)
Background: Juvenile idiopathic arthritis is a main cause of physical disability and has high economic costs for society. The purpose of this study was to assess the fitness levels and the postural and balance deficits with a specific test battery. Methods: Fifty-six subjects were enrolled in this study. Thirty-nine healthy subjects were included in the control group and seventeen in the juvenile idiopathic arthritis group. All subjects were evaluated using a posturography system. The fitness level was evaluated with a battery of tests (Abalakov test, sit-up test, hand grip test, backsaver sit and reach, the toe touch test). An unpaired t-test was used to determine differences. Pearson’s correlation coefficient was used to evaluate the correlation between the tests. Results: The battery of tests demonstrated that subjects in the juvenile idiopathic arthritis group have lower fitness levels compared to the control group. The juvenile idiopathic arthritis group showed low postural control with respect to the control group. Pearson analysis of the juvenile idiopathic arthritis group data showed significant correlations between variables. Pearson’s results from the control group data showed a similar trend. Conclusions: The results suggest that the battery of tests used could be an appropriate tool. However, we highlight that these conclusions need to be supported by other studies with a larger population scale. View Full-Text
Keywords: rheumatic diseases; test battery; juvenile idiopathic arthritis; fitness; balance; quality of life rheumatic diseases; test battery; juvenile idiopathic arthritis; fitness; balance; quality of life
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Patti, A.; Maggio, M.C.; Corsello, G.; Messina, G.; Iovane, A.; Palma, A. Evaluation of Fitness and the Balance Levels of Children with a Diagnosis of Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis: A Pilot Study. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14, 806.

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