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Tae Sung Park

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Tae Sung Park and James M. Johnston

✓ Selective dorsal rhizotomy is a well-established surgical procedure for improving lower-extremity spasticity in children with cerebral palsy. The standard technique requires an L1–S1 laminectomy or laminoplasty for visualization of all dorsal nerve roots exiting at their respective foramina. The authors describe a rhizotomy procedure that requires a single-level laminectomy at the level of the conus, with the advantages of decreased operating time and postoperative pain as well as a minimal risk of progressive lumbar instability. This procedure is both effective and well tolerated in appropriately selected children and adults, and has had one cerebrospinal fluid lead requiring operative repair in more than 1500 patients treated at the authors' institution since 1991.

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Tae Sung Park and Leland Albright

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Donncha F. O'Brien and Tae Sung Park

✓ Selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR) is an evidence-based treatment for cerebral palsy (CP) spasticity. During their lifetime, patients with CP spasticity may require orthopedic surgery for muscles and joints to correct physical deformities and provide a better quality of life. In this review, the authors discuss the timing of such orthopedic surgery, its necessity, and whether it is influenced by the performance of SDR. A review of findings from the authors' 19 years of experience yields the following conclusions: 1) that SDR reduces orthopedic surgery requirements when compared with historical controls; 2) that SDR performed in patients at a young age (2–4 years) can reduce future orthopedic surgery requirements; 3) that independent walkers and diplegic patients will have the smallest amount of orthopedic surgery post-SDR; and 4) that patients who need assistance walking and those with quadriplegia will have the greatest amount, although the frequency of orthopedic surgery for quadriplegic patients is not as high as popularly believed.

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Charles Kuntz IV, and Tae Sung Park

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Michael S. Turner

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Jack R. Engsberg and Tae Sung Park

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Jack R. Engsberg, Sandy A. Ross and Tae Sung Park

Object. In this investigation the authors quantified changes in ankle plantarflexor spasticity and strength following selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR) and intensive physical therapy in patients with cerebral palsy (CP).

Methods. Twenty-five patients with cerebral palsy (CP group) and 12 able-bodied volunteers (AB controls) were tested with a dynamometer. For the spasticity measure, the dynamometer was used to measure the resistive torque of the plantarflexors during passive ankle dorsiflexion at five different speeds. Data were processed to yield a single value that simultaneously encompassed the three key elements associated with spasticity: velocity, resistance, and stretch. For the strength test, the dynamometer rotated the ankle from full dorsiflexion to full plantarflexion while a maximum concentric contraction of the plantarflexors was performed. Torque angle data were processed to include the work done by the patient or volunteer on the machine. Plantarflexor spasticity values for the CP group were significantly greater than similar values for the AB control group prior to surgery but not significantly different after surgery. Plantarflexor strength values of the CP group were significantly less than those of the AB control group pre- and postsurgery. Postsurgery strength values did not change relative to presurgery values.

Conclusions. The spasticity results of the present investigation agreed with those of previous studies indicating a reduction in spasticity for the CP group. The strength results did not agree with the findings of most previous related literature, which indicated that a decrease in strength should have occurred. The strength results agreed with a previous investigation in which knee flexor strength was objectively examined, indicating that strength did not decrease as a consequence of an SDR. The methods of this investigation could be used to improve SDR patient selection.

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Tae Sung Park

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Tae Sung Park