Live Events

AHU Physical Therapy Research Presentation

April 21, 2021
Promotion Code: Apply
April 21, 2021
5:30 PM - 7:30 PM
Virtual Platform: TEAMS
Cheryl Foca

Graduating students and faculty will co-present faculty-driven research, via virtual platform, to promote scholarly inquiry, professional discovery, and networking. The intended audience are practicing PT clinicians that seek to infuse their practice with research, and may want to generate future scholarly agendas in collaboration with AHU DPT students and faculty.

Upon completion of this research event, attendees will:

  1. Recall the importance of evidence informed practice.
  2. Successfully network with AHU DPT faculty and future graduates in a professional forum.
  3. Benefit from evidence to inform practice and/or future scholarly agendas.

Target Audience: Physical Therapists, Community CI's and Clinical Partners


International Service-Learning Experience Impact on DPT Students’ Professional Values and Level of Empathy: A Pilot Study: International service-learning opportunities are becoming more common in higher education because of the potential benefits to student participants. However, academic institutions have yet to determine how ISL experiences impact students’ professional values and level of empathy toward others. The purpose of this study is to determine if a required short-term ISL experience changes the level of empathy in DPT students and/or their awareness of the APTA core values. 

  • Jeff Emde, PT, DPT, CSCS
  • Co-investigator(s): Jennifer Collins, PT, Ed.D., MPA; Taylor Hyde, SPT; Yarah Lugo, SPT; and Madeline Miller, SPT

The impact of the TurboMed Orthosis on Gait Performance and Energy Cost in Adults without Neuromuscular Impairments: A common treatment of foot drop is a posterior spring leaf ankle-foot orthosis. Many studies have been conducted on various ankle-foot orthoses but no studies to date have investigated the TurboMed√§ orthosis. The TurboMed√§ is a new modular-type ankle-foot orthosis that does not prevent plantarflexion or limit dorsiflexion and stores energy during walking.  Therefore, the purpose of this study is to determine the impact of TurboMed√§ on gait parameters and energy cost in comparison to the posterior leaf spring and no AFO in adults without neuromuscular impairments.

  • Jodi Liphart, PT, DHSc, NCS
  • Co-investigator(s): Rose Pignataro, PT, PhD, DPT, CWS; Scott Bennie, DPT, DsC, MBA; Megan Ford, SPT; Conor Klein, SPT; Stefani Rodriguez, SPT; & Courtney Washington, SPT

Central Florida Runners: Perceptions Regarding Running-related Injuries: The aims of this study were to identify recreational runners’ perceptions and beliefs regarding the cause of running related injury, then to refer to existing literature to determine if evidence supports these perceptions.  This phenomenological qualitative study consisted of semi-structured individual interviews with 12 participants from the Central Florida region.  Four consistent overarching themes emerged: runners believe some injuries are related to factors within their control; runners believe that some injuries are related to biomechanical issues; runners attribute some injuries to psychological factors; and runners obtain most knowledge about running and running injuries from the internet and friends.  When comparing runners’ beliefs regarding causes of running related injury with current best evidence, only 30% of what these recreational runners believed about causes of running related injury were actually supported.  Furthermore, these runners obtained most of their knowledge regarding running related injuries from non-medical, non-peer reviewed sources.  Findings from this study highlight the importance of a physical therapist recognizing that patients with running related injuries tend to have misperceptions about underlying causes of injury and the need to address these misperceptions as a valuable part of patient education regarding injury prevention. 

  • Laura Podschun, PT, DPT, OCS, COMT
  • Coinvestigator(s): Erin McCord PT, DPT

What is the effective dose of exercise for improving cognition in Parkinson's Disease? A Systematic Review: Parkinson's disease (PD) is characterized as a heterogeneous multisystem disorder, including motor symptoms such as tremor, stiffness, bradykinesia, and postural instability. Non-motor symptoms such as mood disturbance, sleep disturbance, and cognitive decline are also present. Cognitive dysfunction is clinically one of the main non-motor symptoms of the disease and severely impacts the quality of life and the autonomy of individuals with PD. Evidence showed that exercise produces a significant improvement in cognition. However, little is know about the effective dose of exercise to make such improvements. Therefore, the purpose of this systematic review is to:

  1. Identify the effective dose of exercise to improve cognition in individuals with Parkinson's disease;
  2. Identify the most effective modality of exercise to improve cognition in Parkinson's Disease;
  3. Verify the nature and quality of the evidence found; and,
  4. Provide recommendations for clinical practice and future intervention research based on the findings.
  • Alessandra Swarowski PT, MSc, Ph.D.
  • Coinvestigator(s): de Lima, A PT, MSc; Myra, R PT, MSc; Gomes-Osman, J PT, Ph.D.; Smart, N Ph.D.

Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) for Motor Rehabilitation: A Systematic Review: BCI is a relatively new intervention utilized in physical therapy for the rehabilitation for motor function post stroke.  The purpose of this presentation will be to provide an overview of the current status of the literature on brain computer interface, virtual reality, and functional electrical stimulation in the literature – as it pertains to motor rehabilitation, to inform future studies.

  • Elizabeth Clark PT, DPT, EdD, NCS, RYT 200
  • Co-investigators: Milena Korostenskaja PhD, Adrienne Czaplewski SPT, Khoa Nguyen SPT, Patrick Pasciucco SPT, and Marimar Rios SPT

Leadership Development in Graduate Students at AHU: a mixed methods study:  This research looks at multiple variables in leadership development of graduate students at AHU.  Specifically the mission of the university and graduate departments, faculty course objectives, and DPT/MOT graduate self-perception of leadership development, as a result of the curriculum at AHU.  Quantitative and qualitative data were collected and analyzed, with the results showing promising inclusion of leadership in course design/development, and overall trend towards increases in self perception of leadership in DPT/MOT graduates.

  • Elizabeth Clark PT, DPT, EdD, NCS, RYT 200
  • Co-investigators: Christine Moghimi OTR/L, PhD; Amanda Raffenaud MHA, PhD; Christian Rodriguez PT, DPT; Daniella Avellaneda SPT; Randy Ortiz; Robyn Palisoc SPT; ShaRae Smith SPT; & Ariana Veray SPT.