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Functional outcome measures for infantile Charcot‐Marie‐Tooth disease: a systematic review

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A functional outcome measure for infants (aged 0–3 years) with Charcot‐Marie‐Tooth (CMT) disease is needed for upcoming disease‐modifying trials. A systematic review of outcome measures for infants with neuromuscular disorders was completed to determine if validated measures were available for the CMT infant population. We assessed 20,375 papers and identified seven functional outcome measures for infants with neuromuscular disorders. Six were developed and validated for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). There were no CMT‐specific outcome measures identified; however, one (motor function measure) assessed a range of neuromuscular disorders including 13 infants and children with CMT. The included studies exhibited “good” face, discriminant, convergent and concurrent validity, and reported excellent intra‐ and inter‐rater reliability. No outcome measure was subjected to item response theory. Studies reported outcome measures comprising of 51 different items assessing six domains of function: reflexive movement, axial movement, limb movement, positioning, gross motor, and fine‐motor skills. Scoring of items ranged from 2‐ to 7‐point rating scales; and none were scaled to normative reference values to account for changes in growth and development. The SMA focus of most items is likely to produce ceiling effects and lack sensitivity and responsiveness for within and between types of CMT in infants. Nevertheless, several items across scales assessing distal strength, gross‐ and fine‐motor function, could be included in the development of a composite functional outcome measure for infants with CMT to assess disease‐modifying interventions.
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Keywords: Charcot‐Marie‐Tooth disease; child health; clinical trial; infant; outcome measures

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2018

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