Scielo RSS <![CDATA[South African Journal of Occupational Therapy]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/rss.php?pid=2310-383320170001&lang=en vol. 47 num. 1 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/img/en/fbpelogp.gif http://www.scielo.org.za http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2310-38332017000100001&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en <![CDATA[<b>Postural risks and musculoskeletal discomfort of three preferred positions during laptop use amongst students</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2310-38332017000100002&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en The need to access information technology in modern day occupations has encouraged the use of laptops on a daily basis. It is assumed that using a laptop in a static position over a prolonged period of time may cause postural risk as well as musculoskeletal discomfort. A previous study identified 3 most preferred positions assumed during laptop use. This study investigates the postural risk involved during laptop use by students while assuming these 3 preferred positions. It also investigates the musculoskeletal discomfort experienced by students during laptop use as well as the methods students employ to alleviate this discomfort. A quantitative, cross-sectional study design was used amongst a sample of 72 third year academic students from the University of the Free State. Data were collected by means of a self-administered questionnaire and the Rapid Upper Limb Assessment tool (RULA). For all 3 positions, 69.1% of participants scored in the postural risk category 3-4, indicating a low postural risk. Most participants (62.5%, n=45) experienced musculoskeletal discomfort with regard to pain or numbness, stiffness and spasms with 95% CI for prevalence [51.0%; 72.8%]. Stiffness in the neck was experienced by 47.2% (n=34) participants and spasms in the neck experienced by 44.4% (n=32). Tendencies and statistical significant differences are indicated between genders for adaptations made during laptop use. A recommendation for further study could be to investigate the postural risk involved while the students assume their most preferred posture within the 3 positions. <![CDATA[<b>Current trends in splinting the hand in children with neurological impairments</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2310-38332017000100003&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en AIM: The study aimed to explore Occupational therapy clinicians' current splinting practises in hand function intervention for children with neurological impairments within the South African context. METHODOLOGY: A quantitative cross-sectional design with use of an electronic questionnaire served to address the objectives of this study. The sample included occupational therapists working within the paediatric neurology field in South Africa. The study sample was accessed via convenience and snowball sampling in order to target therapists specifically working in the area of paediatric neurology. RESULTS AND DISCUSSION: Forty therapists from around South Africa (majority from KwaZulu Natal) completed the survey in its entirety. Therapists splint for various reasons and splints are considered effective in neurological cases. The three most prevalent splints were the functional resting, thumb abductor and anti-spasticity splint with the purpose of splinting mainly reported to maintain or improve range of motion (ROM). In this study, therapists appeared to consider knowledge, competency and experience prior to the availability of resources when rationalising the choice to splint. CONCLUSIONS: This study provides insight into the splinting practices amongst occupational therapists who work with neurologically impaired children. Despite the controversy that surrounds splinting in neurology, therapists are using splints in their management with a number of factors considered during the decision-making process. <![CDATA[<b>Spirituality in the occupational therapy community fieldwork process: A qualitative study in the South African context</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2310-38332017000100004&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en BACKGROUND: Spirituality is an integral part of communities; it is influenced by the environment and provides meaning and purpose to occupations. However, spirituality has been a controversial concept within the profession of occupational therapy and is the cause of much debate with a range of viewpoints emerging among students and educators practising in communities. However there has been limited research carried out on spirituality in the community fieldwork process in a South African context. METHODS: An exploratory-descriptive qualitative study was used to explore occupational therapy educators' and students' perceptions regarding spirituality in the community fieldwork process, using focus group discussions which were thematically analysed. RESULTS: Three themes emerged: students' exposure to spirituality in community settings, community development strategies and perceived enablers of spiritual occupations. The results indicated that community entry, asset-based community development and empowerment strategies of locality development seemed to assist students in their exposure to spirituality in communities. These strategies enhanced students' understanding of the role of spiritual occupations in which community members collectively engage in order to improve their social participation and connectedness. CONCLUSIONS: The findings provided an understanding of and insight into spirituality in the occupational therapy community fieldwork process. These findings may help us to understand the significance of experiential learning regarding spirituality in communities. <![CDATA[<b>Street vending in South Africa: An entrepreneurial occupation</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2310-38332017000100005&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en BACKGROUND: Not all occupations are undertaken entirely by choice. Numerous personal, cultural, economic and social factors influence participation in occupation. In low and middle-income countries, such as South Africa, disparate socio-economic factors might necessitate participation in occupations considered to be 'less desirable'. In this article the occupation of street vending is explored and discussed, with an emphasis on livelihood creation and the meaning and purpose derived from this occupation. Street vending is considered for its potential as a vocational occupation for people facing disabling conditions. METHODS: A collective case study was done comprising six participants who were selected through maximum variation sampling. Data were collected using semi-structured interviews and participant observation. Data analysis took the form of an inductive content analysis. RESULTS: Occupational therapists need a comprehensive understanding of occupations before making judgements about these, especially when such occupations are not considered mainstream. One such occupation, namely street vending, predominates in the informal economy of South Africa. Findings revealed that, despite hardships associated with this occupation, street vendors adapt to social, political and economic challenges in their context. RECOMMENDATIONS: A comprehensive approach is needed when appraising the suitability of occupations; one that focuses on the transformative value of occupations in livelihood creation, rather than focusing narrowly on their therapeutic use or potential to contribute to personal meaning. Occupational therapists should adopt a multi-dimensional approach by considering vocational occupations within their social, cultural and political context, whilst keeping the functional requirement in mind and matching these dimensions with impairment or disability if prevalent. <![CDATA[<b>The incidence of sensory integration problems in a distinct sample of individuals with disorders characterised by symptoms of psychosis</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2310-38332017000100006&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en BACKGROUND: Individuals with psychosis present with functional problems that impact negatively on their occupational performance. The framework of sensory integration provides for the assessment and treatment of occupational performance problems related to functions supported by the sensory systems. METHODS: The incidence of sensory integration problems in individuals with disorders characterised by symptoms of psychosis was investigated by using a descriptive study design. Forty-nine (49) adult individuals with symptoms of psychosis admitted to acute wards of a psychiatric institution in South Africa participated in the study. The sensory integration functions of the individuals were established using the Schroeder, Block and Campbell Adult Psychiatric Sensory Integration Evaluation (SBC). RESULTS: The results indicated that the individuals with disorders characterised by symptoms of psychosis experienced sensory integration problems. CONCLUSION: The incidence of sensory integration problems found in this study warrants further research with regard to the effect of sensory integration intervention on the mental healthcare user with disorders characterised by symptoms of psychosis. <![CDATA[<b>Biomechanics for first year occupational therapy students: enriching learning using an E-learning resource</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2310-38332017000100007&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en INTRODUCTION: The educational requirements of students are constantly changing due to technological development. Technology can stimulate and enrich learning but ensuring that teaching methods remain relevant is a challenge. Hybrid learning, including e-learning, in occupational therapy is developing but remains a largely unexplored field in South Africa. METHOD: Changes in achievement associated with the use of an e-learning resource developed for biomechanics was determined. Outcomes were measured using a quasi-experimental design with a pre-test-intervention-post-test repeated measure timeline method. Students' experiences associated with using this e-learning resource were determined by a survey questionnaire. A convenience sample group of N=8I first year occupational therapy students in 2010 and 2011 was obtained. FINDINGS: A positive change in achievement were identified especially at the lower levels of Bloom s taxonomy. The use of the e-learning resource was found to be a positive learning experience. CONCLUSION: The e-learning tool had a significant effect on learning and the majority of participants experienced it as positive. <![CDATA[<b>Occupational therapy intervention into Osteo-Arthritis of the Carpometacarpal joint of the thumb in the South African context</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2310-38332017000100008&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en INTRODUCTION: The carpometacarpal joint (CMCJ) plays a pivotal role in thumb range of motion and positioning and thus essentially, hand function. This study investigated the intervention approach that was preferred in occupational therapy for osteoarthritis (OA) of the CMCJ as well as the factors that affect the course of intervention in the South African context. METHODOLOGY: A descriptive qualitative research design was implemented with a purposive sample of occupational therapists in the Western Cape. Data was gathered using semi-structured interviews which were transcribed and analysed. FINDINGS: Participants interviewed in this study did not follow a fixed intervention regime. The four themes that emerged were: The content of the occupational therapy referral, aspects concerning the patient, assessment practices and intervention practices. Findings demonstrated that it would not be practical to set up a rigid regime, due to the diverse presentation of OA of the CMCJ of the thumb as well as the contributing factors participants reported to impact on course of intervention. CONCLUSION: The focus of occupational therapy should be on treating the symptoms of OA of the CMCJ in addition to occupational performance. The compilation of basic guidelines is proposed to provide meaningful intervention within the South African context <![CDATA[<b>Basic principles to which reviewers of articles should adhere</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S2310-38332017000100009&lng=en&nrm=iso&tlng=en INTRODUCTION: The carpometacarpal joint (CMCJ) plays a pivotal role in thumb range of motion and positioning and thus essentially, hand function. This study investigated the intervention approach that was preferred in occupational therapy for osteoarthritis (OA) of the CMCJ as well as the factors that affect the course of intervention in the South African context. METHODOLOGY: A descriptive qualitative research design was implemented with a purposive sample of occupational therapists in the Western Cape. Data was gathered using semi-structured interviews which were transcribed and analysed. FINDINGS: Participants interviewed in this study did not follow a fixed intervention regime. The four themes that emerged were: The content of the occupational therapy referral, aspects concerning the patient, assessment practices and intervention practices. Findings demonstrated that it would not be practical to set up a rigid regime, due to the diverse presentation of OA of the CMCJ of the thumb as well as the contributing factors participants reported to impact on course of intervention. CONCLUSION: The focus of occupational therapy should be on treating the symptoms of OA of the CMCJ in addition to occupational performance. The compilation of basic guidelines is proposed to provide meaningful intervention within the South African context