Accelerometry Measuring the Outcome of Robot-Supported Upper Limb Training in Chronic Stroke: A Randomized Controlled Trial

R.J.M. Lemmens, A.A.A. Timmermans, Y.J.M. Janssen-Potten, S.A.N.T.D. Pulles, R.P.J. Geers, W.G.M. Bakx, R.J.E.M. Smeets, H.A.M. Seelen

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Abstract

Purpose: This study aims to assess the extent to which accelerometers can be used to determine the effect of robot-supported task-oriented arm-hand training, relative to task-oriented arm-hand training alone, on the actual amount of arm-hand use of chronic stroke patients in their home situation. Methods: This single-blind randomized controlled trial included 16 chronic stroke patients, randomly allocated using blocked randomization (n = 2) to receive task-oriented robot-supported arm-hand training or task-oriented (unsupported) arm-hand training. Training lasted 8 weeks, 4 times/ week, 2 Chi 30 min/ day using the (T-) TOAT ((Technology-supported)-Task-Oriented-Arm-Training) method. The actual amount of arm-hand use, was assessed at baseline, after 8 weeks training and 6 months after training cessation. Duration of use and intensity of use of the affected arm-hand during unimanual and bimanual activities were calculated. Results: Duration and intensity of use of the affected arm-hand did not change significantly during and after training, with or without robot-support (i.e. duration of use of unimanual use of the affected arm-hand: median difference of -0.17% in the robot-group and -0.08% in the control group between baseline and after training cessation; intensity of the affected arm-hand: median difference of 3.95% in the robot-group and 3.32% in the control group between baseline and after training cessation). No significant between-group differences were found. Conclusions: Accelerometer data did not show significant changes in actual amount of arm-hand use after task-oriented training, with or without robot-support. Next to the amount of use, discrimination between activities performed and information about quality of use of the affected arm-hand are essential to determine actual arm-hand performance.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere96414
JournalPLOS ONE
Volume9
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014

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