Examination of touch-coordinate errors of adolescents with unilateral spastic cerebral palsy at an aiming-tapping task

J Back Musculoskelet Rehabil. 2020;33(1):81-89. doi: 10.3233/BMR-181385.


Background/objective: This study aimed to investigate performance (touch-coordinate errors, inter-touch interval) of touch screen technology in adolescents with unilateral spastic cerebral palsy (USCP) and healthy peers.

Materials and methods: This prospective case-control study included 31 adolescents. The participants consisted of 15 adolescents with CP in the USCP group and 16 age-matched healthy peers in the control group. All participants performed an aiming-tapping task with an Android tablet. Four sessions were randomly applied: visual feedback (VF) and no VF with the dominant hand's index finger (DHF), and VF and no VF with the non-dominant hand's index finger (NDHF). Inter-touch interval (ITI) and touch-coordinate errors (TCE) were calculated.

Results: There were significant differences between the groups for VF and no VF-NDHF TCE and ITI (respectively p= 0.001, p= 0.01, p= 0.001, p= 0.004) and VF and no VF-DHF TCE values (respectively p= 0.01, p= 0.008). When comparing the dominant and non-dominant hand in the USCP group, there was a significant difference on TCE with no VF (p= 0.01).

Conclusion: This study provided insight into the touch screen performance of adolescents with USCP, who performed an aiming-tapping task with a tablet. Results showed that both affected and unaffected hand performance of touch screen tasks was impaired in adolescents with USCP.

Keywords: Cerebral palsy; screen; technology; touch; unilateral.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cerebral Palsy / physiopathology*
  • Child
  • Feedback, Sensory / physiology*
  • Female
  • Fingers / physiopathology
  • Hand / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Prospective Studies
  • Psychomotor Performance / physiology*
  • Touch Perception / physiology