In the past two decades, many studies reported the efficacy of upper limb robotic rehabilitation in patients after stroke, also in its chronic phase. Among the possible advantages of robotic therapy over conventional therapy are the objective measurements of kinematic and kinetic parameters during therapy, such as the spatial volume covered by the patient's upper limb and the weight support provided by the robot. However, the clinical meaning and the usability of this information is still questioned. Forty patients with chronic stroke were enrolled in this study and assessed at the beginning of upper limb robotic therapy (Armeo® Power) and after two weeks (ten sessions) of therapy by recording the working volume and weight support provided by the robot and by administering six clinical scales to assess upper limb mobility, strength, spasticity, pain, neurological deficits, and independency. At baseline, the working volume significantly correlated with spasticity, whereas weight support significantly correlated with upper limb strength, pain, spasticity, and neurological deficits. After two weeks of robotic rehabilitation, all the clinical scores as well as the two parameters improved. However, the percentage changes in the working volume and weight support did not significantly correlate with any of the changes in clinical scores. These results suggest caution in using the robotic parameters as outcome measures because they could follow the general improvement of the patient, but complex relationships with clinical features are possible. Robotic parameters should be analyzed in combination with the clinical scores or other objective measures because they may be informative about therapy progression, and there is a need to combine their clinical, neuroscientific, and biomechanical results to avoid misleading interpretations.

Clinical interpretation of working volume and weight support in upper limb robotic neurorehabilitation after stroke

Morone G.
2021

Abstract

In the past two decades, many studies reported the efficacy of upper limb robotic rehabilitation in patients after stroke, also in its chronic phase. Among the possible advantages of robotic therapy over conventional therapy are the objective measurements of kinematic and kinetic parameters during therapy, such as the spatial volume covered by the patient's upper limb and the weight support provided by the robot. However, the clinical meaning and the usability of this information is still questioned. Forty patients with chronic stroke were enrolled in this study and assessed at the beginning of upper limb robotic therapy (Armeo® Power) and after two weeks (ten sessions) of therapy by recording the working volume and weight support provided by the robot and by administering six clinical scales to assess upper limb mobility, strength, spasticity, pain, neurological deficits, and independency. At baseline, the working volume significantly correlated with spasticity, whereas weight support significantly correlated with upper limb strength, pain, spasticity, and neurological deficits. After two weeks of robotic rehabilitation, all the clinical scores as well as the two parameters improved. However, the percentage changes in the working volume and weight support did not significantly correlate with any of the changes in clinical scores. These results suggest caution in using the robotic parameters as outcome measures because they could follow the general improvement of the patient, but complex relationships with clinical features are possible. Robotic parameters should be analyzed in combination with the clinical scores or other objective measures because they may be informative about therapy progression, and there is a need to combine their clinical, neuroscientific, and biomechanical results to avoid misleading interpretations.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11697/181938
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