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Enabling Knowledge Translation: Implementation of a Web-based Tool for Independent Walking Prediction After Traumatic Spinal Cord Injury

Ramtin Hakimjavadi; Heather A. Hong; Nader Fallah; Suzanne Humphreys; Stephen Kingwell; Alexandra Stratton; Eve Tsai1; Eugene K. Wai1; Kristen Walden; Vanessa K. Noonan; Philippe Phan


Several clinical prediction rules (CPRs) have been published, but few are easily accessible or convenient for clinicians to use in practice. We aimed to develop, implement, and describe the process of building a web-based CPR for predicting independent walking 1-year after a traumatic spinal cord injury (TSCI).


Using the published and validated CPR, a front-end web application called “Ambulation” was built using HyperText Markup Language (HTML), Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), and JavaScript. A survey was created using QualtricsXM Software to gather insights on the application’s usability and user experience. Website activity was monitored using Google Analytics. Ambulation was developed with a core team of seven clinicians and researchers. To refine the app’s content, website design, and utility, 20 professionals from different disciplines, including persons with lived experience, were consulted.


After 11 revisions, Ambulation was uploaded onto a unique web domain and launched ( as a pilot with 30 clinicians (surgeons, physiatrists, and physiotherapists). The website consists of five web pages: Home, Calculation, Team, Contact, and Privacy Policy. Responses from the user survey (n = 6) were positive and provided insight into the usability of the tool and its clinical utility (e.g., helpful in discharge planning and rehabilitation), and the overall face validity of the CPR. Since its public release on February 7, 2022, to February 28, 2023, Ambulation had 594 total users, 565 (95.1%) new users, 26 (4.4%) returning users, 363 (61.1%) engaged sessions (i.e., the number of sessions that lasted 10 seconds/longer, had one/more conversion events e.g., performing the calculation, or two/more page or screen views), and the majority of the users originating from the United States (39.9%) and Canada (38.2%).

Ambulation is a CPR for predicting independent walking 1-year after TSCI and it can assist frontline clinicians with clinical decision-making (e.g., time to surgery or rehabilitation plan), patient education and goal setting soon after injury. This tool is an example of adapting a validated CPR for independent walking into an easily accessible and usable web-based tool for use in clinical practice. This study may help inform how other CPRs can be adopted into clinical practice.

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