Cramer says clock is ticking for post-stroke therapy, rehabilitation
October 17, 2011
Robots may extend the post-stroke race against the clock, according to a presentation by UC Irvine neurologist Steven Cramer, MD, during a meeting of the American Neurological Association.
While minutes count in the race to treat stroke patients with drugs or interventional techniques to eliminate a clot, Cramer says the clock also ticks for a period in which combined restorative therapies and rehabilitation efforts should be initiated to achieve maximum effect.
Comparing brain plasticity after stroke to that seen in early development, Cramer emphasized the need for pairing restorative therapy with behavioral conditioning, and doing it all at the optimal time.
Rehabilitation can include the use of robots, such as UC Irvine’s Hand-Wrist Assisting Robotic Device, which has been shown to improve arm and hand coordination after a stroke.
Cramer suggests striking while the iron is hot. And he warns, it may not be hot very long after a stroke.
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