Constraint-induced movement therapy combined with conventional neurorehabilitation techniques in chronic stroke patients with plegic hands: A case series

Academic Article


  • Objective: To determine whether the combination of Constraint-Induced Movement Therapy (CIMT) and conventional rehabilitation techniques can produce meaningful motor improvement in chronic stroke patients with initially fisted hands. Design: Case series. Setting: University hospital outpatient laboratory. Participants: Consecutive sample (N=6) >1 year poststroke with plegic hands. Interventions: Treatment consisted of an initial period of 3 weeks (phase A) when adaptive equipment in the home, orthotics, and splints were employed to improve ability to engage in activities of daily living. This was continued in phase B, when CIMT and selected neurodevelopmental treatment techniques were added. Main Outcome Measures: Motor Activity Log (MAL), accelerometry, Fugl-Meyer Motor Assessment (F-M). Results: Patients exhibited a large improvement in spontaneous real-world use of the more-affected arm (mean lower-functioning MAL change=1.3±0.4 points; P<.001; d′=3.0) and a similar pattern of increase in an objective measure of real-world more-affected arm movement (mean change in ratio of more- to less-affected arm accelerometer recordings=0.12±0.1 points; P=.016; d′=1.2). A large improvement in motor status was also recorded (mean F-M change=5.3±3.3 points; P=.005; d′=1.6). Conclusions: The findings of this pilot study suggest that stroke patients with plegic hands can benefit from CIMT combined with some conventional rehabilitation techniques, even long after brain injury. More research is warranted. © 2013 American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine.
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    Author List

  • Taub E; Uswatte G; Bowman MH; Mark VW; Delgado A; Bryson C; Morris D; Bishop-Mckay S
  • Start Page

  • 86
  • End Page

  • 94
  • Volume

  • 94
  • Issue

  • 1