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Children with arthrogryposis multiplex congenita (AMC) often exhibit arm movement impairments that can negatively impact activities of daily living, such as reaching, object exploration, object play, and self-care. This study evaluated the effects of intervention involving the Playskin LiftTM (Playskin) exoskeletal garment on arm function during object play for children with AMC. Seventeen children with AMC (5 males; 6-35 months at the beginning of the study) were tested in their homes biweekly with and without the Playskin throughout a 1-month Baseline, 4-month Intervention, and 1-month Post-Intervention. Within sessions (assistive effects), children contacted and manipulated objects more while wearing the Playskin; they also showed greater intensity, complexity, and variability of behaviors performed during free play, as well as increased play space and reduced number of compensatory arm and trunk flings to facilitate reaching. Across time (rehabilitative effects), children significantly improved their visual-manual coupling as well as their ability to lift objects from a surface and to manipulate objects using one hand; in addition, children exhibited greater multimodality, variability, and intensity of their play behaviors. Current results suggest the Playskin LiftTM may serve as an effective assistive and rehabilitative device to improve play for children with arm movement impairments.

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This is the peer reviewed version of the following article:

Babik, I; Cunha, A.B.; & Lobo, M.A. (2019). Play with Objects in Children with Arthrogryposis: Effects of Intervention with the Playskin LiftTM Exoskeletal Garment. American Journal of Medical Genetics Part C: Seminars in Medical Genetics, 181(3), 393-403.

which has been published in final form at doi: 10.1002/ajmg.c.31719. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.