If you or someone you love has had a stroke or CVA you will have an idea of the changes that can occur. Strategies used by physical therapists to encourage the use of impaired limbs include therapy equipment for stroke patients selective sensory stimulation such as tapping or stroking, active and passive range-of-motion exercises, and temporary restraint of healthy limbs while practicing motor tasks.
The muscles supporting the shoulder joint, particularly the supraspinatus and posterior deltoid become flaccid and can no longer offer adequate support leading to a downward and outward movement of arm at the shoulder joint causing tension on the relatively weak joint capsule Other factors have also been cited as contributing to subluxation such as pulling on the hemiplegic arm and improper positioning.
A brain stroke can result in the loss of various sensorimotor functions in a patient, and can often lead to conditions such as paralysis, sensory perceptual dysfunction and spasticity, as well as muscle atrophy (a condition in which the muscles start to get wasted due to lack of any physical activity).
The type of physical activity prescribed must take into account the stroke patient's functional limitations and co-morbidities, as well as the patient's personal preferences, environment, and resources, and could range from an exercise program at home to an appropriate community or sport program.
Whether at health resorts or at home, patients should always be under careful physician care to determine an appropriate and safe program for stroke recovery and exercise,” points out Ivan Ferran Director of Clinical Exercise at the Pritikin Longevity Center.
Although central benefits, such as improved fitness and cognition, might arise from nontask-specific exercise program, task-related training would seem more efficient because it would enable retention of these benefits as well as offer functional advantage.
Johns Hopkins' Kata Project, a collaboration between neuroscientists, engineers, animal experts, artists and entertainment industry experts, has designed an immersive experience for post-stroke patients who will try to swim” as a virtual dolphin named Bandit.
Each advance in a patient's skills and condition is a victory, and over time these small victories start to add up. For persons receiving rehabilitation services in an acute, subacute, skilled, LTAC or nursing home setting, the period of treatment often lasts from two to four weeks.
They will use three promising exercise programs used in cities across Canada for people who have had strokes — the Fitness and Mobility Exercise Program, the Fit for Function program which is offered by the YMCA in the Hamilton area, and the Together in Movement and Exercise program offered in some community centres in Ontario and B.C.