Aim To investigate the impact of auditory stimulation on motor function in children with cerebral palsy (CP) and disabling hypertonia. Method 9 matched pairs (age: 7y5m, SD 4y1m; 13 boys; gross-motor-functional-classification-scale: median 4; manual-ability-classification-system: median 4) were randomized to receive either auditory stimulation embedded in music (study, n = 9) or music alone (sham, control, n = 9) for at least 10 minutes 4 times a week for 4 weeks. Goal-Attainment-Scale, Care-and-Comfort-Hypertonicity-Questionnaire, Gross-Motor-Function–Measure and Quality-of-Upper-Extremity-Skills-Test (QUEST) were assessed before and 5 months following intervention. Result Children receiving auditory stimulation attained more goals than children who listened to music alone (p = 0.002). Parents reported improved care and comfort in children in the study group compared to a slight deterioration in controls (p = 0.002). Upper extremity skills improved in the study group compared to controls (p = 0.006). Similar gross motor function changes were documented in both groups (p = 0.41). One participant reported increased seizure frequency; no other participants with epilepsy reported increased seizure frequency (n = 6/18) and no other adverse events were reported. Interpretation Auditory stimulation alleviated hypertonia and improved fine and gross motor functions.
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© 2018 Ben-Pazi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.