The Effect of Whole Body Vibration on Postural Control of Ataxic Patients: a Randomized Controlled Cross-Over Study


Whole body vibration (WBV) applications have been used in recent years to increase muscle strength, power, and postural control in healthy and various disease populations. This study aims to investigate the effects of WBV on postural control in patients with ataxia. Twenty-four patients were randomly allocated to two groups. In the first group, whole body vibration and exercise therapy (WBV + E) were applied together for the first 8 weeks; after 1 week washout, only exercise program (OE) was applied for the second 8 weeks. In the second group, the OE program was applied first followed by the WBV + E program. Outcome measures were Sensory Organization Test (SOT), Adaptation Test (ADT), Limits of Stability Test (LOS), International Classification Ataxia Ratio Scale (ICARS), Berg Balance Scale (BBS), and Timed Up and Go Test with cognitive task (TUG-C). Twenty patients (mean age ± SD, 34.00 ± 9.16 years) completed the study. The scores of SOT, ICARS, and BBS improved significantly after both OE and WBV + E program (p < 0.05). Improvements in the WBV + E program were higher (p < 0.05). The scores of ADT, TUG-C, and three parameters of LOS improved significantly after WBV + E (p < 0.05), while there was no significant change after OE (p > 0.05). This study demonstrated that exercise programs supported by WBV can play an important role in the improvement of all components of postural control in patients with ataxia. Identifier: NCT02977377

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We would like to thank all ataxic patients for taking part into the study.

Author information




Ender Ayvat: Conceptualization, data curation, formal analysis, methodology, writing-original draft, and writing-review and editing. Muhammed Kılınç: Conceptualization, data curation, formal analysis, methodology, writing-original draft, and writing-review and editing. Fatma Ayvat: Data curation, formal analysis, methodology, and writing-review and editing. Özge Onursal Kılınç: Data curation, formal analysis, methodology, and writing-review and editing. Sibel Aksu Yıldırım: Conceptualization, formal analysis, methodology, and writing-review and editing.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Özge Onursal Kılınç.

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The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethics Approval

The study was approved by the Ethics Committee of the Hacettepe University (GO 14/397) and all procedures performed in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

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Before starting the experiment, all participants were informed about objectives and methods of the study and asked to sign informed consent.

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Ayvat, E., Kılınç, M., Ayvat, F. et al. The Effect of Whole Body Vibration on Postural Control of Ataxic Patients: a Randomized Controlled Cross-Over Study. Cerebellum (2021).

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  • Ataxia
  • Exercise therapy
  • Whole body vibration
  • Postural control
  • Rehabilitation