Date of Award


Document Type

Scholarly Project

Degree Name

Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT)


Occupational Therapy

First Advisor

Michael Atkinson


Evidence-Based Medicine; Parkinson Disease -- therapy


The therapeutic benefit of occupational therapy with Parkinson's disease has not been studied in great detail. The purpose of this Scholarly Project was to provide extensive and comprehensive evidence-based information about Parkinson's disease as it applies to occupational therapists. This information was utilized to generate clinical guidelines in the form of a user-friendly manual meant for practicing OTs in treating Parkinson's disease.

An extensive literature review was performed using PubMed to determine current evidence-based practice that occupational therapists and other rehabilitation therapists were currently using. Following the review of literature, a needs assessment was completed per survey directed towards practicing OTs. The goal of the survey was to validate the need for these guidelines throughout the country.

The user-friendly manual is based on the Ecological Model of Human Performance using establish/restore, adapt/modify and prevent as intervention strategies. The product is titled "Guidelines for Occupational Therapists in Treating Parkinson's disease." It consists of four portions, the first focuses on a brief introduction to the disease, the next explains the general neuroscience behind the disease, the third portion gives a brief overview of medical interventions including pharmacological and surgical.

The fourth part of the product consists of the evidence-based guidelines for OTs to follow when treating persons with Parkinson's disease. Occupational therapy offers many benefits to persons with Parkinson's disease, including modification and/or adaptation of activities of daily living CADLs) with or without the use of adaptive equipment. Other intervention areas OTs may focus on are: therapeutic exercise routines, caregiver education, joint movement coordination, energy conservation and social skills · training. This user-friendly manual will provide occupational therapists with the necessary information to treat persons with Parkinson's disease using evidence based guidelines.