Progressive abduction loading therapy targeting flexion synergy to regain reaching function in chronic stroke: Preliminary results from an RCT

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Reaching function is impaired following stroke due to abnormal coupling of shoulder abduction and elbow flexion. This phenomenon is commonly referred to as flexion synergy, loss of independent joint control, or impaired joint individuation. We have been successful in treating individuals with chronic stroke with moderate to severe motor impairments through the employment of targeted rehabilitation robotics and identified progressive abduction loading as a key element to the rehabilitation of reaching. Here we expand upon the investigation of progressive abduction loading therapy by testing two variants of the exercise in a larger sample and including a 3-month follow-up. Furthermore, we attempt to glean additional insights into the mechanisms underlying improvements by not only assessing reaching distance as a function of abduction loading but, for the first time, assessing peak reaching velocity, a combined measure of dynamic elbow and shoulder strength. Thirty-one participants with severe stroke were randomized to two intervention variants. Preliminary analysis has been performed and results are presented for blinded combined-group data. Following the intervention, there was a significant improvement in both reaching distance and peak reaching velocity. Mechanisms for improvement are briefly discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2016 38th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBC 2016
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Pages5837-5840
Number of pages4
ISBN (Electronic)9781457702204
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 13 2016
Event38th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBC 2016 - Orlando, United States
Duration: Aug 16 2016Aug 20 2016

Publication series

NameProceedings of the Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBS
Volume2016-October
ISSN (Print)1557-170X

Other

Other38th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBC 2016
CountryUnited States
CityOrlando
Period8/16/168/20/16

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Signal Processing
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Health Informatics

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