Task Specificity & Functional Outcome: What is best for Post-Stroke Rehabilitation?

Rachel Tomazin, Illinois Wesleyan University

Abstract

Stroke is a debilitating insult to the brain occurring from a blockage in blood supply (ischemic), or a bleed (hemorrhagic) in one hemisphere of the brain. Worldwide, approximately 10 million people are left with moderate to severe disability due to stroke; the most common deficit is upper extremity impairment. Current stroke rehabilitation strategies utilize task specific training of a skill, meaning one practices the specific skill they want to regain. However, it is possible that there are more generalized types of therapy that can be as effective in rehabilitating debilitated skills. The current study utilizes several skilled reaching tasks in mice that have shown striking parallels to human dexterous movements to observe the effects of task-specific versus generalized upper extremity rehabilitation post-stroke. Our findings have meaningful implications for rehabilitative strategies post-stroke and test the validity of a skilled reaching task used in the rodent model.

 
Apr 13th, 9:00 AM Apr 13th, 10:00 AM

Task Specificity & Functional Outcome: What is best for Post-Stroke Rehabilitation?

Center for Natural Sciences, Illinois Wesleyan University

Stroke is a debilitating insult to the brain occurring from a blockage in blood supply (ischemic), or a bleed (hemorrhagic) in one hemisphere of the brain. Worldwide, approximately 10 million people are left with moderate to severe disability due to stroke; the most common deficit is upper extremity impairment. Current stroke rehabilitation strategies utilize task specific training of a skill, meaning one practices the specific skill they want to regain. However, it is possible that there are more generalized types of therapy that can be as effective in rehabilitating debilitated skills. The current study utilizes several skilled reaching tasks in mice that have shown striking parallels to human dexterous movements to observe the effects of task-specific versus generalized upper extremity rehabilitation post-stroke. Our findings have meaningful implications for rehabilitative strategies post-stroke and test the validity of a skilled reaching task used in the rodent model.