Neural recovery and high-intensity training in neuro rehabilitation

Stroke Rehabilitation

Writing in the Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation January 2013 Dr. Carolynn Patten and her group discuss the effectiveness of functional task practice (FTP) and HYBRID (combined FTP and power training).

Dr. Pattern is the head author in a  group from the Brain Rehabilitation R&D Center Malcolm Randall VA Medical, Center, the Department of Physical Therapy, University of Florida, the Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, The University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada and the the VA Palo Alto Health Care System, Palo Alto, CA, USA, Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Washington, DC, USA, and the Center for and the National, Rehabilitation Hospital, Washington, DC, USA.
It is thought that repetitive task practice drives neural plasticity following stroke and the group investigated the effectiveness of functional task practice (FTP) and HYBRID (combined FTP and power training – high-intensity, dynamic resistance training) in physical and occupational therapy of post stroke patients.
Outcome measures looked at to assess recovery of the upper-extremity motor function post-stroke were the Wolf Motor Function Test (WMFT-FAS, Primary Outcome), upper-extremity Fugl-Meyer Motor Assessment, and the Ashworth Scale, and Functional Independence Measure. The group found that functional and neuromechanical gains were greater following HYBRID vs. FPT.
Because no exacerbation of spasticity or musculoskeletal complaints, was associated with HYBRID training, the group speculated that an improved stretch reflex modulation and increased neuromuscular activation was achieved during Hybrid training without the deleterious consequences of increased spasticity.
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