Bilateral motor priming for post stroke upper extremity hemiparesis: A randomized pilot study

Mary Ellen Stoykov, Erin King, Fabian J. David, Amanda Vatinno, Louis Fogg, Daniel M. Corcos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Bilateral priming, device assisted bilateral symmetrical wrist flexion/extension, is a noninvasive neuromodulation technique that can be used in the clinic. OBJECTIVE: We examined the additive effect of bilateral motor priming and task specific training in individuals with severe upper limb hemiparesis. METHODS: This is a parallel assignment, single-masked, randomized exploratory pilot study with three timepoints (pre-/post-intervention and follow up). Participants received either bilateral motor priming or health care education followed by task specific training. Sixteen participants who were at least 6 months post-stroke and had a Fugl Meyer Upper Extremity (FMUE) score between 23 and 38 were randomized. Our primary and secondary measures were Chedoke Arm & Hand Activity Index 9 (CAHAI-9) and the FMUE respectively. We determined changes in interhemispheric inhibition using transcranial magnetic stimulation. We hypothesized that improvement in the priming group would persist at follow up. RESULTS: There was no between-group difference in the CAHAI. The improvement in the FMUE was significantly greater in the experimental group at follow up (t = 2.241, p = 0.045). CONCLUSIONS: Both groups improved in the CAHAI. There was a significant between-group difference in the secondary outcome measure (FMUE) where the bilateral priming group had an average increase of 10 points from pre-intervention to follow up.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11-22
Number of pages12
JournalRestorative Neurology and Neuroscience
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2020


  • Stroke
  • bilateral
  • hemiparesis
  • interhemispheric inhibition
  • priming
  • task specific training
  • upper extremity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Clinical Neurology


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