Eur J Pediatr Surg 1995; 5: 24-26
DOI: 10.1055/s-2008-1066258
Original article

© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

The Use of the Orthotic Research and Locomotor Assessment Unit (ORLAU) ParaWalker by Adult Myelomeningocele Patients: A Seven Year Retrospective Study - Preliminary Results

J.  Stallard , R. E. Major , J. H. Patrick
  • Orthotic Research and Locomotor Assessment Unit, Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Hospital, Oswestry, Shropshire, SY 10 7AG, UK
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
25 March 2008 (online)


There is a widely accepted perception that whereas many paediatric myelomeningocele patients use walking orthoses effectively, very few continue to ambulate in adult life.

A seven-year retrospective review of 31 patients for whom the ORLAU ParaWalker (2) was prescribed in Oswestry showed that there was a 58% adult compliance rate. Of the 18 who continued walking the average age at supply was 11.28 years (range 5 to 24), average age at survey 22.61 yrs. (range 17 to 33) and the average period of use was 11.33 yrs. (range 3 to 16).

These results compare surprisingly well with an ORLAU review of adult traumatic lesions who had a compliance rate of 63% and average follow-up of 2.87 years (12).

The ORLAU Para Walker has been shown to be an efficient form of walking (1, 2) and this is considered an important feature in ensuring that many adults can continue to take advantage of the proven therapeutic benefits of walking (10). Notwithstanding, the adult compliance rate shown in this study lends strength to the case for a vigorous and efficient walking programme in treating spina bifida children so as to promote the longer term health of the patient.