Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):14, 26, 2, 61-68
Study monitored wheelchair cushion performance over time in order to identify the most important factors that predict cushion degradation. Cushions were obtained from a convenience sample of adult wheelchair users seen by the seating clinic at a rehabilitation hospital. The wheelchair users and their cushions were evaluated multiple times. Information was collected from participants’ about their posture and activities, their cushions, and use of their cushions. Cushion performance was determined by measuring interface pressure using a buttock model. Data analysis proceeded in two steps. First, principal component analysis was run to reduce the number of variables. Second, multiple regression determined which variables influenced the interface pressure performance variables. Results indicated that user characteristics and the manner in which the cushion is used have a greater influence on cushion performance than the chronological age of the cushion. This information can be useful to clinicians who should query users about cushion use when investigating the need to replace a cushion. This information is applicable to policies that govern cushion replacement and indicted that wear on a cushion is not equivocal across users.