Friday, October 11th, 2019
Winstein CJ, Wolf SL, Dromerick AW, et al. JAMA 2016;315(6):571-581.
This clinical trial recruited 361 participants, approximately 45 days post-stroke with mild to moderate impairments, for upper extremity retraining in order to improve functional use of the impaired upper extremity. Participants received either a new problem solving approach, Accelerated Skill Acquisition Program (ASAP) for 30, 1 hour sessions, Dose Equivalent Usual Customary Care (DEUCC), or Usual and Customary Care which varied from 0-46 hours. Findings demonstrated that all three groups improved in function (Wolf Motor Function Test) and quality of life (Stroke Impact Scale).
Friday, August 2nd, 2019
One of the most common impairments resulting from stroke is paralysis, which can affect a portion or the entire side of the body. Problems with body posture, walking, and balance can be significant. Two thirds of the patients are unable to walk without assistance in the first week after stroke (Jorgensen HS et al. Arch Phys Med Rehabil, 1995). Approximately 35% of survivors with initial paralysis of the leg do not regain useful walking function (Hendricks HT et al. Arch Phys Med Rehabil, 2002). Although 65% to 85% of stroke survivors learn to walk independently by 6 months post stroke, gait abnormalities and poor endurance persists through the chronic stages of the condition (Wade DT et al. Scand J Rehabil Med, 1987).
Dorothee Zuleger, MOT, OTR/L, ATRIC
Monday, January 28th, 2019
What is Aquatic Therapy?
Aquatic therapy is a type of therapy that takes place in a pool or other aquatic environment. It is a physical and medical rehabilitation specialty that requires the supervision of a trained professional.
Dorothee Zuleger, MOT, OTR/L, ATRIC
Thursday, April 26th, 2018
Damage to one side of the brain can cause a lack of attention to the opposite side. Most common is an inattention or neglect to the left side of the body after an injury to the right side of the brain due to stroke or traumatic brain injury. The brain attends to the right side with both hemispheres but attends to the left side with only the right hemisphere.
Tuesday, March 27th, 2018
Anyone who’s done physical or occupational therapy knows how hard it is not to cheat. The body wants to get back to work, and the easiest way to do that is to use the uninjured limbs to help out. The therapist is there to make sure it’s the injured limb that’s doing the work.
Wednesday, January 17th, 2018
Intensive therapy can help people who have suffered a stroke recover motor function—even if the treatment begins a year or more after the stroke occurred. After a stroke, the brain and body can start recovering immediately and can show improvement up to six months afterward.
Tuesday, December 26th, 2017
One of the most common impairments resulting from stroke is paralysis, which can affect a portion or the entire side of the body. Problems with body posture, walking, and balance can be significant. A patient’s rehabilitation should start as soon as he or she is stable. That could be anywhere from a couple of days to a few weeks or longer. Established guidelines, as well as a huge body of literature, insist that the earlier therapy is initiated the better.
Thursday, April 27th, 2017
Listed below are various clinical product categories that you may have learned while in therapy. Feel free to click on any category to see a list of products that may be appropriate for your needs.
Monday, April 3rd, 2017
It is true that recovering from a stroke will be an uphill battle for many, however, it is also accurate that the latest research findings regarding neuro recovery are more promising than ever before. How serious are you with embracing evidence into your practice? As a clinician, are you stuck using numerous theoretical-based treatment concepts that have not scientifically been proven to be effective?
Listed below are some of the common interventions supported by research that have shown positive results. How many of the below techniques are in your current therapy toolbox? If just a few, then why?
Monday, January 23rd, 2017
What is it?
Constraint-induced movement therapy (CI, CIT, or CIMT) is a form of rehabilitation therapy that improves upper extremity function in stroke and other neurological injuries by increasing the use of their affected upper limb. The focus of CIMT is to combine restraint of the unaffected limb and intensive use of the affected limb. Types of restraints include a sling, a splint, a sling combined with a resting hand splint, a half glove, and a mitt. Determination of the type of restraint used for therapy depends on the required level of safety vs. intensity of therapy.
Tuesday, November 15th, 2016
There is strong evidence that repetitive task specific training techniques improve upper extremity function. Task training yields long lasting cortical reorginization specific to the corresponding areas being used. Traditional treatment interventions are based primarily on routine exercises and/or purposeful activities. For many patients, the road to recovery is long and difficult and clinicians are challenged with the daunting task of maintaining patient motivation and compliance while alleviating boredom. Computer based games and virtual reality have recently emerged as novel strategies to maintain motivation and compliance while providing the necessary repetitive training.
Friday, October 21st, 2016
It is true that recovering from a stroke will be an uphill battle for many, however, it is also accurate that the latest research findings regarding neuro recovery are more promising than ever before. How serious are you with embracing evidence into your practice?
Thursday, September 29th, 2016
Damage to the brain after a stroke can cause many cognitive changes. Doing things that once were easy may now be hard. Problems with memory and thinking are very common after a stroke and most people will have some difficulties. After a stroke, cognitive rehabilitation can aid the mind just as physical therapy aids the body, according to Psych Central, an online mental health and psychology network. The purpose of cognitive therapy is to improve damaged mental abilities and language skills caused by a stroke.
Tuesday, September 13th, 2016
Are you caught up with the latest advances in neurorehabilitation? Find relevant stroke neuro courses below to be sure.
Wednesday, September 7th, 2016
Following an extensive search of 100’s of stroke rehabilitation products and programs, we have summarized the best available products currently on the market for stroke recovery. The products are organized into relevant categories list below. Feel free to click on any category to see a list of products that may be appropriate for your needs.
Monday, August 15th, 2016
Most people who have decreased vision or double vision after a stroke do not fully recover. Some recovery is possible and it usually happens in the first few months after a stroke.
Saturday, July 23rd, 2016
Monday, July 11th, 2016
Amit Kumar, Occupational Therapist, LS Life Skills Therapy Services Inc., Surrey, BC
Every stroke survivor’s impairment is unique. By doing regular functional activities and exercises, you can increase your quality of movement and independence in all stages following stroke. Activity may be too easy or too hard depending on the extent of impairment and function. Your occupational therapist can help you develop a daily activity and exercise program appropriate for you. Activities and exercises to improve your hand function should be simple and done at home at any time.
Thursday, June 16th, 2016
The latest research shows that the brain is capable of reorganizing after a stroke. Therefore, arm and hand recovery is more possible than previously thought. However, in order to improve function in the upper extremity, the client must be willing to incorporate the affected side purposefully, functionally, and repeatedly.
Listed below are 2 good videos that review simple ways to stretch and exercise the affected hand and fingers.
Thursday, June 9th, 2016
A stroke is a “brain attack”. It occurs when blood flow to an area of brain is cut off. When this happens, brain cells are deprived of oxygen and begin to die. When brain cells die during a stroke, abilities controlled by that area of the brain such as memory and muscle control are lost.
Stroke can be caused either by a clot obstructing the flow of blood to the brain (called an ischemic stroke) or by a blood vessel rupturing and preventing blood flow to the brain (called a hemorrhagic stroke). A TIA(transient ischemic attack), or “mini stroke”, is caused by a temporary clot.
Monday, May 30th, 2016
Recovering from a stroke can be quite challenging from both a psychological and physical perspective. In addition to completely experiencing a life-changing event, staying motivated with a daily intensive home exercise program can be a struggle. Once a client is discharged from the hospital, it will be important to maintain or improve their recovery by beginning an aggressive home exercise program immediately.
Tuesday, May 24th, 2016
Stroke is one of the main causes of disability throughout the world. Due to hemorrhagic or ischemic damage to brain, many clients will suffer from impaired strength leading to poor gross motor movements and motor planning. In order to perform every day tasks such as grooming, eating, typing on a computer, or writing, adequate proximal strength (shoulder/elbow) is required to allow for normal distal control (hand/wrist).
Monday, May 16th, 2016
A stroke is the rapid loss of brain function(s) due to disturbance in the blood supply to the brain. When you have an ischemic stroke, there is an interruption, or reduction, of the blood supply. Eighty percent of all strokes occur due to ischemia. With a hemorrhagic stroke, there is bleeding in the brain. After about 4 minutes without blood and oxygen, brain cells become damaged and may die. When brain cells are damaged or die, the body parts controlled by those cells cannot function. The loss of function may be mild or severe and temporary or permanent. This depends on where and how much of the brain is damaged and how fast the blood supply can be returned to the affected cells.
Thursday, April 21st, 2016
Mirror therapy, a treatment technique first described by V.S. Ramachandran for phantom limb pain following amputation, is a form of motor imagery in which a mirror is used to process visual feedback about motor performance of the unaffected body part as it performs various movements. It is primarily used to speed up and improve motor function after stroke and other neurological disorders.
Thursday, March 17th, 2016
Approximately 30% of all stroke patients suffer from post-stroke visual impairment (Sand KM. Acta Neurol Scand Suppl. 2013). Following a stroke or other neurological injuries, various types of vision deficits can occur including the inability to recognize objects, color vision deficits and difficulty with perceiving various types of motion. Approximately 20% experience permanent visual deficits (Romano JG. J of Neurol Sci. 2008). According to the National Stroke Association, homonymous hemianopia, which is the loss of one half of the visual field in each eye, is the most common visual disorder.
Friday, February 26th, 2016
The latest research shows that the brain is capable of rewiring and adapting after stroke. Therefore, arm and hand recovery is more possible than previously thought. However, in order to improve function in the upper limb, the client must be willing to incorporate the affected side purposefully, functionally, and repeatedly. In addition to functional training, other beneficial strategies include strength training, mental imagery, robotics, and gravity compensation.
Below are the key takeaway’s that highlight the current thinking from the scientific community.
Thursday, February 25th, 2016
What is a Stroke?
A stroke, or cerebrovascular accident (CVA), is the rapid loss of brain function(s) due to disturbance in the blood supply to the brain. When you have an ischemic stroke, there is an interruption, or reduction, of the blood supply. Eighty percent of all strokes occur due to ischemia. With a hemorrhagic stroke, there is bleeding in the brain. After about 4 minutes without blood and oxygen, brain cells become damaged and may die. When brain cells are damaged or die, the body parts controlled by those cells cannot function. The loss of function may be mild or severe and temporary or permanent. This depends on where and how much of the brain is damaged and how fast the blood supply can be returned to the affected cells.