Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Robot therapy can improve arm, shoulder mobility after stroke

Date:
February 10, 2011
Source:
American Heart Association
Summary:
Robotic-assisted rehabilitation therapy, combined with standard rehabilitation, can improve upper extremity mobility in stroke patients with paralysis on one side. Patients with severe paralysis were more likely to be aided by robotic therapy.

Therapy in which robots manipulate paralyzed arms, combined with standard rehabilitation, can improve arm and shoulder mobility in patients after stroke, according to research presented at the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference 2011.

Patients on robotic therapy showed marked improvement in two measures of upper extremity function: the Fugl-Meyer flexor synergy score, a 0 to 12 scale with higher numbers reflecting recovery of voluntary arm movement; and the Fugl-Meyer shoulder/elbow/forearm score, a 0 to 36 scale with higher numbers reflecting recovery of motor function in the shoulder, elbow and forearm.

"Combining robotic exercise with regular rehabilitation may be the key to successful intervention," said Kayoko Takahashi, Sc.D., O.T.R., lead author of the study and clinician and research associate in the Department of Occupational Therapy in Kitasato University East Hospital in Kanagawa, Japan. Robots could allow therapists to focus on helping patients master daily activities while maintaining repetitive training, Takahashi said.

The new study involved 60 stroke survivors with hemiplegia (paralysis on one side of the body) treated at six rehabilitation centers in Japan. The patients, average age 65, had suffered a stroke in the previous four to eight weeks. All received standard rehabilitation therapy from an occupational therapist.

Half the group received robotic therapy every day for six weeks, in sessions lasting 40 minutes. The other half spent the same amount of time working through a standard self-training program for hemiplegic patients, performing stretches and passive-to-active exercises of their affected arm.

With a recent trend in helping patients function with one arm, "many post-stroke patients have given up hope of recovery of their affected arms." Takahashi said. "Participating in such robotic exercise is therefore expected to give patients insights about their future ability and a more positive image regarding their affected arm, increasing their self-efficacy and motivation toward rehabilitation."

The group assigned to robotic therapy used a Reo Therapy System by Motorika Ltd. in Israel. For the therapy, the patient's forearm, either resting on or strapped to a platform, is moved in multiple directions based on pre-programmed exercise movements.

Researchers selected five such pre-programmed movements. For instance, in one of the movements, "forward reach," the robot helps patients extend their arms forward as if reaching for something in front of them.

Therapists also selected from five levels of robotic assistance according to what was most appropriate for the patient, from movement entirely guided by the robot and passive on the patient's part, to movement actively performed by the patient.

The successful test of robots adds a new wrinkle to stroke rehabilitation strategies, Takahashi said. While repetitive movement is an essential therapy, physical and occupational therapists aren't always available to provide care, and self-training, if not done correctly, can result in pain and disability.

"Robots, on the other hand, can carry out the repetitive movement exercise with exactly the right movement pattern to prevent misuse," Takahashi said.

Based on initial mobility scores, patients with severe hemiplegia were more likely to benefit from the robotic therapy. The finding is consistent with the notion that higher-functioning patients already can correctly carry out self-training programs, while patients with lower function -- only reflex and minor voluntary movement -- are more likely to benefit from the support and aid of robots, Takahashi said.

"Further research using larger groups of patients is necessary to investigate the efficacy of such robotic exercise in more detail," Takahashi said.

Co-authors are: Kazuhisa Domen, M.D., D.M.Sc.; Kenji Hachisuka, M.D., D.M.Sc.; Tomosaburo Sakamoto, M.D., Ph.D.; Masahiko Toshima, M.D.; Yohei Otaka, M.D.; Makiko Seto, M.D., Ph.D.; Katsumi Irie, M.D., Ph.D.; Bin Haga, M.D., Ph.D; and Tetsuhiko Kimura, M.D., Ph.D. Author disclosures are on the abstract.

The study was in funded in part by Teijin Pharma Limited.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Heart Association. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Heart Association. "Robot therapy can improve arm, shoulder mobility after stroke." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 February 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110210111259.htm>.
American Heart Association. (2011, February 10). Robot therapy can improve arm, shoulder mobility after stroke. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110210111259.htm
American Heart Association. "Robot therapy can improve arm, shoulder mobility after stroke." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/02/110210111259.htm (accessed April 20, 2014).

Share This



More Computers & Math News

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Nintendo Changed Gaming World, but Its Future Uncertain: Upstone

Nintendo Changed Gaming World, but Its Future Uncertain: Upstone

AFP (Apr. 19, 2014) The Nintendo Game Boy celebrates its 25th anniversary Monday and game expert Stephen Upstone says the console can be credited with creating a trend towards handheld gaming devices. Duration: 01:21 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Nearly Two Weeks On, The Internet Copes With Heartbleed

Nearly Two Weeks On, The Internet Copes With Heartbleed

Newsy (Apr. 19, 2014) The Internet is taking important steps in patching the vulnerabilities Heartbleed highlighted, but those preventive measures carry their own costs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Facebook To Share Nearby Friends Data With Advertisers

Facebook To Share Nearby Friends Data With Advertisers

Newsy (Apr. 19, 2014) A Facebook spokesperson has confirmed the company will use GPS data from the new Nearby Friends feature for advertising sometime in the future. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Man Claims He Found Loch Ness Monster With... Apple Maps?

Man Claims He Found Loch Ness Monster With... Apple Maps?

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) Andy Dixon showed the Daily Mail a screenshot of what he believes to be the mythical beast swimming just below the lake's surface. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins