Critical factors related to return to work after stroke: A qualitative study

Robert Hartke*, Robert Trierweiler, Rita Bode

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Return to work (RTW) after stroke is often perceived as a critical marker of recovery and contributes to overall well-being and life satisfaction of survivors. Quantitative studies have yielded conflicting results in identifying specific predictors of successful RTW, and qualitative studies have been very limited. The current study conducted in-depth interviews with 12 stroke survivors selected by job type and extent of RTW. Seven themes were identified in an analysis of interview transcripts: financial, impairments as barriers, interpersonal support, therapy supporting RTW, organizational influences, work/job specific issues, and psychological issues. These themes confirm and expand on existing qualitative data that focus on survivors' perceptions of their work potential and efforts by emphasizing the need to focus beyond the survivors and their work to include other people and organizations to facilitate the RTW process. Implications for intervention at the individual, work, and community levels are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)341-351
Number of pages11
JournalTopics in Stroke Rehabilitation
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 2011


  • cerebrovascular accident
  • employment
  • qualitative analysis
  • stroke
  • vocational rehabilitation
  • work

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Rehabilitation
  • Community and Home Care


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