Behavioral treatment of ambulatory function in a child with myelomeningocele. A case report. Academic Article uri icon


  • The patient was a 5-year-old girl with a myelomeningocele at L3. Before the behavioral program began, she was receiving physical therapy daily at her school for the orthopedically handicapped and had remained nonambulatory. Reports from her school physical therapist stated that she had a poor attention span, was not motivated to walk, and frequently threw temper tantrums to avid ambulation training. The tantrum behavior included attempts to hurt the therapist by pulling her hair or pinching her. This tantrum behavior also occurred at home when her mother encouraged her to walk. The initial evaluation revealed the presence of motor function through L3. The Gesell Developmental Schedules indicated the child was functioning at 15 to 18 months of age in adaptive and fine motor skills. A well-fitting polypropylene hip-knee-ankle-foot orthosis had been previously made for her, and she had worn it during school physical therapy sessions before she started the behavioral treatment program.

author list (cited authors)

  • Manella, K. J., & Varni, J. W.

citation count

  • 7

complete list of authors

  • Manella, KJ||Varni, JW

publication date

  • October 1984