A reliable and valid outcome battery for measuring recovery of lower limb function and balance after burn injury

Burns. 2010 Sep;36(6):780-6. doi: 10.1016/j.burns.2009.10.019. Epub 2010 Jan 18.


Introduction: The measurement of recovery after burns to the lower limbs is hampered by an absence validated injury specific tools. This research aimed to select and validate a battery of outcome measures of recovery after lower limb burn injury (LLBI).

Method: Reliability study: Reliability of the single leg stance (SLS), the Timed Up and Go (TUG) and the tandem walk (TW) tests were measured using a test-retest trial involving 28 patients with LLBI. Validity study: Clinical data from 172 patients with LLBI were used to compare changes in each LL outcome measure with changes in the Burn Specific Health Scale-Brief (BSHS-B).

Results: All tests, except the SLS test with eyes closed, demonstrated excellent inter-rater reliability (ICCs=0.81-0.93). The TUG and the TW-forwards tests were shown to be valid and to provide additional information to the BSHS-B when combined as a battery. The TW-backwards test was redundant while the SLS and ankle DF measures did not correlate highly with the BSHS-B.

Conclusion: This study shows that the TUG test and the TWF are reliable and valid in the burns population and along with the BSHS-B form a useful test battery for measuring recovery from LLBI.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Burns / physiopathology
  • Burns / rehabilitation*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lower Extremity / injuries*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care / methods*
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care / standards*
  • Postural Balance*
  • Recovery of Function
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Young Adult