Physiotherapy and occupational therapy
Physiotherapy includes simple exercises to re-educate the muscles and nerves after a stroke, in order to improve balance and mobility. Physiotherapists can also help people relearn how to walk. If a person's walking ability is impaired, it is often recovered around 3 months after a stroke.[1,2]
Physiotherapy can also help a person to use the arm or leg affected by the stroke spontaneously (that is, without a conscious effort). Often, the degree of spontaneous use continues to improve for several months after the course of therapy has ended.
Occupational therapy can help people with everyday activities such as preparing a meal, dressing, taking public transport and using the telephone, so that they can enjoy a greater degree of independence after a stroke.
- De Wit L, Putman K, Lincoln N et al. Stroke rehabilitationThe treatment of a person with an illness or disability to improve their function and health. in Europe: what do physiotherapists and occupational therapists actually do? Stroke 2006; 37: 1483-9.
- Dickstein R, Dunsky A and Marcovitz E. Motor imagery for gait rehabilitationThe treatment of a person with an illness or disability to improve their function and health. in post-stroke hemiparesis. Phys Ther 2004; 84: 1167-77.
- Han CE, Arbib MA and Schweighofer N. Stroke rehabilitationThe treatment of a person with an illness or disability to improve their function and health. reaches a threshold. PLoS Computational Biology 2008; 4: e1000133
- Legg L, Drummond A, Leonardi-Bee J et al. Occupational therapy for patients with problems in personal activities of daily living after stroke: systematic review of randomised trials. BMJ 2007; 335: 922.
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