Faculty Advisor(s)

Kirsten Buchanan

Document Type

Course Paper

Publication Date



© 2017 Mark Whitsitt


Background and Purpose: People with Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) disease have a greater risk of falls and subsequent fractures. There is a scarcity of information regarding the most effective rehab protocol for a patient with lower extremity fractures and CMT disease. Utilization of the AlterG® has been shown to promote early mobility in patients with an orthopedic diagnosis, which is also vital for CMT patients, but has not been fully investigated. The purpose of this case report was to investigate a comprehensive physical therapy program, including use of the AlterG® treadmill, for a patient with lower extremity fractures and CMT disease. Case Description: The patient was a 54-year-old female with CMT. A traumatic fall caused lower extremity fractures to her left talus, tibia, and fibula after which she received surgery. Upon initial evaluation, the patient demonstrated decreases in left ankle and knee passive range of motion (PROM) and strength. A comprehensive rehab program three times a week for 16 weeks included manual techniques, therapeutic exercise, and stretching. Gait training, using the AlterG® concentrated on early weight bearing and proper biomechanics. Observations: From initial evaluation to discharge, the patient improved in PROM, strength, girth measurements and ambulatory ability. Lower Extremity Functionality Scale scores demonstrated a 67% improvement in lower extremity function. The patient progressed from partial weight bearing to full weight bearing without an assistive device. Functionally, the patient reported being able to return to work unrestricted. Conclusion: A comprehensive physical therapy program including the early implementation of the AlterG® for a patient with multiple lower extremity fractures and CMT disease resulted in increased function and decreased reported pain.


The case report poster for this paper can be found here:




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