Multiple toilet grab-bar configurations are required by people with a diverse spectrum of disability. The study purpose was to determine toilet grab-bar preference of healthy seniors, seniors with a hip replacement, and seniors post-stroke, and to determine the effect of each configuration on centre of pressure (COP) displacement during toilet transfers. METHODS: 14 healthy seniors, 7 ambulatory seniors with a hip replacement, and 8 ambulatory seniors post-stroke participated in the study. Toilet transfers were performed with no bars (NB), commode (C), two vertical bars (2VB), one vertical bar (1VB), a horizontal bar (H), two swing-away bars (S) and a diagonal bar (D). COP was measured using pressure sensitive floor mats. Participants rated the safety, ease of use, helpfulness, comfort and preference for instalment. RESULTS: 2VB was most preferred and had the smallest COP deviation. Least preferred was H and NB. C caused largest COP displacement but had favourable ratings. DISCUSSION: The preference and safety of the 2VB should be considered in the design of accessible toilets and in accessibility construction guidelines. However these results need to be verified in non-ambulatory populations. C is frequently prescribed, but generates large COP deviation, suggesting it may present an increased risk of falls.

Additional Metadata
Keywords assistive devices, elder care, high-risk fall patients, stroke, workplace accommodations
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1080/10400435.2014.976799
Journal Assistive Technology
Citation
Kennedy, M.J. (Matthew Joel), Arcelus, A. (Amaya), Guitard, P. (Paulette), Goubran, R, & Sveistrup, H. (Heidi). (2015). Toilet grab-bar preference and center of pressure deviation during toilet transfers in healthy seniors, seniors with hip replacements, and seniors having suffered a stroke. Assistive Technology, 27(2), 78–87. doi:10.1080/10400435.2014.976799