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New research shows additional potential benefits of power standing wheelchairs

In addition to a systematic literature review, the recently published Permobil White Paper uses motion capture data, survey results from 137 individuals and three qualitative interviews. This White Paper shows the connection between therapeutic recommendations, published literature and the lived experience, and can inform the clinical decision-making process.   

Stockholm, June 14, 2023 – Permobil’s review of the current research focuses on the impact that power standing provides separate from other non-powered standing devices such as a stander or standing frame. Many benefits are dependent on the amount of time spent in standing. One added benefit of having standing as part of a power wheelchair is reducing the number of transfers needed throughout a day. This can make access to the standing position faster and require less assistance.   

“The standing function has a great impact on the lifelong health and wellness of our users and also to be able to take part in life moments like dancing with a partner.”, says Karin Leire, Vice President Scientific & Medical Affairs.  

“Despite the medical, functional and social benefits of standing being clear, it is the solution within the array of power seat functions most under-prescribed or reimbursed. We hope this research and evidence will support individual justification, and in the long run also standard of care.” Karin added.  

The results from the survey add unique findings on outcomes that are not commonly reported on in the literature, such as quality of life, with 80 percent of individuals reporting on a higher quality of life with power standing function compared to without. 

“The body of evidence from scientific literature on power standing has increased during the last years. We can now start to see the differences between power standing wheelchairs when compared to standing frames and tables.”, says Carla Nooijen, Senior Researcher, Scientific & Medical Affairs.  

“The literature reports on many positive effects like off-loading pressure from both the seat and the backrest, improvements in bladder and bowel function, and increased independence. At the same time, we need to take into consideration that some may experience pain while standing or may be self-conscious when standing in front of others.” added Carla. 

The White Paper was supported by a series of global webinars for researchers and healthcare professionals with the paper’s authors. Recordings of the webinars are now available to watch online.