Abstract TMP31: Peripheral Nerve Stimulation Paired with Constraint-Induced Therapy to Enhance Post-Stroke Upper Extremity Motor Performance
Research has shown that peripheral nerve stimulation (PNS) can enhance motor learning following cortical lesions. Studies have also shown that intensive upper extremity motor training can significantly enhance post-stroke motor performance. Constraint-induced therapy (CIT) is a form of intensive training that restricts use of the non-paretic upper extremity during repetitive, task-oriented motor training of the paretic extremity. Extensive evidence has validated the effectiveness of CIT for enhancing post-stroke upper extremity motor recovery. No studies have evaluated how PNS may modulate the effects of CIT. Therefore, we conducted a pilot study of PNS paired with CIT and hypothesized that in subjects with stroke, pairing CIT with active PNS would lead to significantly more improved motor function in the paretic upper extremity than CIT paired with sham PNS. Outcome measures included the Fugl-Meyer Assessment Scale (FMA; primary outcome measure), the Wolf Motor Function Test (WMFT), and the Action Research Arm Test (ARAT). Nineteen chronic stroke subjects with mild to moderate upper extremity motor deficit received 2 hours of either active (n=10) or sham (n=9) PNS preceding 4 hours of CIT for 10 consecutive weekdays. Changes in FMA, WMFT, and ARAT were analyzed using factorial ANOVA. Results showed significant (p<0.05) change in all measures at completion evaluation compared with baseline (FMA (p=0.005); WMFT (p=0.030); ARAT (p=0.020)) as well as 1-month follow-up compared with baseline (FMA (p=0.048); WMFT (p=0.045); ARAT (p=0.047)). These results highlight the enormous potential for PNS paired with CIT to enhance post-stroke upper extremity motor recovery more effectively than CIT alone.
- © 2012 by American Heart Association, Inc.