Adherence to physiotherapy clinical guideline acute ankle injury and determinants of adherence: A cohort study

Philip J. Van Der Wees*, Erik J.M. Hendriks, Mariette J. Jansen, Hans Van Beers, Rob A. De Bie, Joost Dekker

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Background. Clinical guidelines are considered important instruments to improve quality in health care. In physiotherapy, insight in adherence to guidelines is limited. Knowledge of adherence is important to identify barriers and to enhance implementation. Purpose of this study is to investigate the ability to adherence to recommendations of the guideline Acute ankle injury, and to identify patient characteristics that determine adherence to the guideline. Methods. Twenty-two physiotherapists collected data of 174 patients in a prospective cohort study, in which the course of treatment was systematically registered. Indicators were used to investigate adherence to recommendations. Patient characteristics were used to identify prognostic factors that may determine adherence to the guideline. Correlation between patient characteristics and adherence to outcome-indicators (treatment sessions, functioning of patient, accomplished goals) was calculated using univariate logistic regression. To calculate explained variance of combined patient characteristics, multivariate analysis was performed. Results. Adherence to individual recommendations varied from 71% to 100%. In 99 patients (57%) the physiotherapists showed adherence to all indicators. Adherence to preset maximum of six treatment sessions for patients with severe ankle injury was 81% (132 patients). The odds to receive more than six sessions were statistically significant for three patient characteristics: females (OR:3.89; 95%CI: 1.41-10.72), recurrent sprain (OR: 6.90; 95%CI: 2.34 - 20.37), co-morbidity (OR: 25.92; 95% CI: 6.79 - 98.93). All factors together explained 40% of the variance. Inclusion of physiotherapist characteristics in the regression model showed that work-experience reduced the odds to receive more than six sessions (OR: 0.2; 95%CI: 0.06 - 0.77), and increased explained variance to 45%. Conclusion. Adherence to the clinical guideline Acute ankle sprain showed that the guideline is applicable in daily practice. Adherence to the guideline, even in a group of physiotherapists familiar with the guideline, showed possibilities for improvement. The necessity to exceed the expected number of treatment sessions may be explained by co-morbidity and recurrent sprains. It is not clear why female patients were treated with more sessions. Experience of the physiotherapist reduced the number of treatment sessions. Quality indicators may be used for audit and feedback as part of the implementation strategy.

Original languageEnglish
Article number45
JournalBMC Musculoskeletal Disorders
Volume8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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