A new study geared toward assessing robot-assisted therapy (RT) and its effect on outcomes of the severity of initial motor deficits, indicates that higher treatment intensity provided by RT may be linked to better outcomes for stroke patients. The study appears in the American Heart Association’s journal Stroke.
Researchers report that the study encompassed 54 patients who were randomized into a 4-week intervention of higher-intensity RT, lower-intensity RT, or control treatment. The Fugl-Meyer Assessment was administered at baseline, midterm, and post-treatment. Researchers add that secondary outcomes included the Medical Research Council scale, the Motor Activity Log, and the physical domains of the Stroke Impact Scale.
According to the study’s results, participants in the higher-intensity RT group demonstrated significantly greater improvements on the Fugl-Meyer Assessment than the lower-intensity RT and control treatment groups at midterm and at post-treatment. The study also indicates that secondary outcomes were significant within the groups, however differences among the three groups were not significant. Individuals in the higher-intensity RT group exhibited higher recovery rates than those of the low-intensity RT group, specifically during the Fugl-Meyer assessment, researchers add.
The study also notes that scatterplots with curve fitting indicated that patients with moderate motor deficits exhibited more improvement than those with severe or mild deficits following higher-intensity RT. Researchers add that the study’s results may ultimately play a role in shaping further stroke rehabilitation using RT.