On the relative contribution of the paretic leg to the control of posture after stroke.
until further notice
SourceNeurorehabilitation and Neural Repair, 23, 3, (2009), pp. 267-274
Article / Letter to editor
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Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair
SubjectDCN 1: Perception and Action; NCEBP 10: Human Movement & Fatigue
BACKGROUND: Reduced postural steadiness and asymmetry of weight bearing are characteristic for posture after stroke. OBJECTIVE: To examine the relative contribution of each leg to postural control in a cohort of 33 stroke patients at 5 stages during 3 months of inpatient rehabilitation, while taking clinical scores of sensory and motor impairments of the paretic leg into account. METHODS: Participants were instructed to stand as symmetrically as possible under both sensory and cognitive manipulations, while a dual-plate force platform was used to assess the contribution of each leg to postural control, quantified by the amplitude, velocity, and regularity of recorded center-of-pressure trajectories. A greater contribution of the nonparetic leg was expected, particularly in patients with ankle clonus, disturbed sensibility, and lack of selective muscle control on the paretic side. RESULTS: With follow-up assessments, weight-bearing asymmetry and postural steadiness improved. Patients strongly relied on visual information. When attention was distracted by having the patients perform an arithmetic task, weight-bearing asymmetry increased, suggesting that symmetric weight bearing was attention demanding. Patients with severe motor impairments of the paretic leg showed greater static (weight-bearing) and dynamic (lateralized control) asymmetries than patients with limited motor impairments, whereas postural steadiness did not differ between these subgroups. Disturbed sensation did not affect weight-bearing asymmetry, postural steadiness, or lateralized control. CONCLUSION: Patients with severe motor impairments of the paretic leg employ an effective compensatory strategy consisting of asymmetric weight bearing and lateralized control.
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