Changes in arm-hand function and arm-hand skill performance in patients after stroke during and after rehabilitation

Johan Anton Franck*, Rob Johannes Elise Marie Smeets, Henk Alexander Maria Seelen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

15 Citations (Web of Science)

Abstract

Background

Arm-hand rehabilitation programs applied in stroke rehabilitation frequently target specific populations and thus are less applicable in heterogeneous patient populations. Besides, changes in arm-hand function (AHF) and arm-hand skill performance (AHSP) during and after a specific and well-described rehabilitation treatment are often not well evaluated.

Method

This single-armed prospective cohort study featured three subgroups of stroke patients with either a severely, moderately or mildly impaired AHF. Rehabilitation treatment consisted of a Concise_ Arm_ and_ hand_ Rehabilitation_ Approach_ in_ Stroke (CARAS). Measurements at function and activity level were performed at admission, clinical discharge, 3, 6, 9 and 12 months after clinical discharge.

Results

Eighty-nine stroke patients (M/F:63/23; mean age: 57.6yr (+/-10.6); post-stroke time: 29.8 days (+/-20.1)) participated. All patients improved on AHF and arm-hand capacity during and after rehabilitation, except on grip strength in the severely affected subgroup. Largest gains occurred in patients with a moderately affected AHF. As to self-perceived AHSP, on average, all subgroups improved over time. A small percentage of patients declined regarding self-perceived AHSP post-rehabilitation.

Conclusions

A majority of stroke patients across the whole arm-hand impairment severity spectrum significantly improved on AHF, arm-hand capacity and self-perceived AHSP. These were maintained up to one year post-rehabilitation. Results may serve as a control condition in future studies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number0179453
Number of pages18
JournalPLOS ONE
Volume12
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jun 2017

Keywords

  • RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED-TRIAL
  • CLINICALLY IMPORTANT DIFFERENCE
  • UPPER-LIMB RECOVERY
  • UPPER-EXTREMITY
  • MOTOR RECOVERY
  • ABILHAND QUESTIONNAIRE
  • INTERRATER RELIABILITY
  • OUTCOME MEASURES
  • SUBACUTE STROKE
  • ISCHEMIC-STROKE

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