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Research News


Enabling Mobility in the Community


Bridging the gap between rehabilitation and community services More »

Early interventions seek to improve outcomes for NICU patients


Significantly preterm infants often require specialized care available only in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), with the length of hospitalization dependent upon how early the infant was delivered and the severity of any associated medical complications or conditions. It is ... More »

Rewiring the brain to improve rehabilitation outcomes


Scott Frey, PhD, was just a young child when he first began to think about how science and rehabilitation melded together. “My mother had multiple sclerosis and I grew up going to therapy and neurology appointments with her,” he says. “That sparked an interest in ... More »

Overseas exchange


Three students from the Program in Occupational Therapy traveled to Hong Kong in June 2015 to participate in the Summer Overseas Exchange Subsidy Scheme (SOESS). The week-long program is hosted by the Department of Rehabilitation Science at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU), the only university ... More »

Remembering Dr. Gray: Celebrating the life and work of David B. Gray, PhD


Author’s note: Initially, I sat down with David B. Gray, PhD, professor of occupational therapy and neurology, to discuss his career and accomplishments as part of our preparations for his upcoming retirement symposium, which was scheduled for the end of this semester. On February 12, however, ... More »

Developing a fall prevention website


Falls from heights are the top cause of construction fatalities and account for one-third of on-the-job injury deaths in the industry. For Vicki Kaskutas, OTD ’08, MHS, OTR/L, FAOTA, improving worker health and safety through the study and prevention of occupational ... More »

International Research Team Examines Cross-cultural Issues in Stroke


The Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging at the Institute for Public Health is developing a Global Aging Initiative with the McDonnell International Scholars Academy partner institutions. The Friedman Center for Aging has funded ten proposals to support collaborations that will advance cross-national research and education on older ... More »

Collaborating Across Time


Modern scientific research has evolved into a complex, multi-faceted process in which collaboration is key. For Karl V. Schultz, PhD, that desire to find a research collaborator reached beyond his lifetime when he made his son, Gordon Burkhart-Schultz, the Successor Trustee Executor of his estate. “Suddenly, I ... More »

Occupational Therapy Practice Guidelines for Home Modifications accepted to NGC website


Carol Siebert, MS, OTR/L FAOTA, Stacy Smallfield, DrOT, MSOT ‘96, OTR/L, and Susy Stark, PhD, OTR/L, FAOTA (pictured right), have authored a publication titled, “Occupational Therapy Practice Guidelines for Home Modifications.” In September, the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) submitted the publication to ... More »

Developing a Fall Prevention Website for Residential Construction


Seeing a need and finding a solution is at the very core of occupational therapy. For Vicki Kaskutas, OTD, MHS, OTR/L, FAOTA, the need was apparent the moment she reviewed the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Guidance Document for Residential Construction. “When OSHA changed ... More »

Equine Assisted Occupational Therapy


Hippotherapy is defined as the use of the movement of a horse as a treatment strategy in the context of occupational, physical or speech/language therapy. Timothy Shurtleff, OTD, OTR/L , an instructor in occupational therapy and neurosurgery in the Program of Occupational Therapy, became involved in equine ... More »

Developing Rehabilitation Tools Using Virtual Technology


“While trying to decide which laboratory to choose, I found myself drawn to the use of video games as therapy that Jack Engsberg, PhD, discussed in class one day. I am a bit of a gamer myself so I knew immediately that was the lab for ... More »

Helping Children Overcome Challenges


A mathematical model developed by faculty in the Program in Occupational Therapy confirms that factors beyond physical or medical concerns can impact a chronically ill child’s ability to learn. The model, created in the Program’s Child Health and Education Laboratory, showed that significant environmental factors, such as a ... More »

Making a Difference in the Community


Occupational therapist Catherine Hoyt, OTD ’10, OTR/L , heads to north St. Louis to see a family whose child has sickle cell disease. In her car are books and toy blocks. In her mind are blossoming ideas of ways to involve the child and her family in ... More »

Usability, Not Just Accessibility


David Gray, PhD , has a grand plan to create a global, searchable online map for persons with disabilities. As the head of the Program in Occupational Therapy’s Disability and Community Participation Research Office, he wants to create a database that maps out locations and environments in ... More »

From Treadmill to WheelMill


 Approximately 1.7 million people in the United States use manual wheelchairs. But while some people undergo fit evaluations to find the best wheelchair, many do not  have proper training on how to actually use one. “A lack of evidence-based training programs makes it difficult ... More »

Tracking Movement


In Washington University’s Human Performance Laboratory , an artificial robotic horse stands quietly in the corner waiting to be used by clients. On computer screens, motion-activated video games are being transformed into rehabilitation therapies. In a nearby room, a specialized treadmill for wheelchairs has been built and is ... More »

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