Physical Therapy Helps Recover Arm Function in Chronic Stroke

Physical therapy promotes the recovery of arm function and neuroplasticity in all chronic stroke patients, according to a study published online April 25 in the Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice.

Raquel Carvalho, P.T., from the University of Minho in Braga, Portugal, and colleagues assessed the effect of physical therapy based on problem-solving in recovering arm function in three chronic stroke patients. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (during motor imagery and performance), the action research arm test, the motor assessment scale, and the Fugl-Meyer assessment scale were used to evaluate neuroplasticity and function.

Full story at the Cardiology Advisor

 

Associations of grip strength with cardiovascular, respiratory, and cancer outcomes and all cause mortality

In a nutshell previous studies have demonstrated an association between low grip strength and poor health outcomes (in other words increased mortality). On the whole previous studies have had too small sample sizes to detect disease specific mortality and have been unable to clearly show relationship with age. The Biobank study has an adequate number of participants, some 500,000, to be able to detect disease and age specific nuances in this relationship.

Some serious math too place in the analysis of the study’s findings and I’m not the one to talk you through the finer details. In essence lower grip strength was strongly associated with adverse health outcomes. This was consistent between gender and remained robust after adjustment for socioeconomic factors. Compared to other commonly used tools grip strength is arguably as reliable as systolic BP and low levels of physical activity to predict a person’s poor overall health.

Full story at Physiospot

Physical Therapy May Help Loosen Up Patients with Scleroderma

Physical therapy may be used to help alleviate some of the symptoms of scleroderma, reduce pain associated with the condition, and improve mobility, according to a news article that appears in Scleroderma News.

Physical therapy exercises could help stretch the skin, muscles, and joints affected by scleroderma. Doing so could help improve the patient’s posture, increase the range of movements that a patient can perform, as well as prevent the loss of muscle mass and strength.

Performing physical therapy could also reduce other symptoms of scleroderma, including gastrointestinal, lymph node, and nervous system problems, the news story continues.

Full story at ptproductsonline.com

How is psoriatic arthritis different from osteoarthritis?

Psoriatic arthritis and osteoarthritis are types of arthritis. Psoriatic arthritis is an autoimmune disorder that happens to some people who have psoriasis. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative condition that occurs when the cartilage at the end of the bone wears away.

Arthritis is a term used to describe over 100 conditions that cause joint pain or joint damage. Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common type of arthritis, affecting over 30 million Americans.

Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) and OA share some common symptoms, but there are also some key differences between the conditions.

Full story at Medical News Today

Stroke survivors may benefit from magnetic brain stimulation

A new meta-analysis of existing studies shows that a technique called repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation might be a useful tool to help stroke survivors regain the ability to walk independently.

Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation(rTMS) is a noninvasive brain stimulation technique; magnetic coils are placed on a person’s scalp, and short electromagnetic pulses are delivered to specific brain areas through the coil.

Although these pulses only cause an almost imperceptible “knocking or tapping” sensation for the patient undergoing the procedure, they reach into the brain, triggering electric currents that stimulate neurons.

Full story at Medical News Today

Osteopathy can be used to treat mental health related to back pain – new study

Millions worldwide suffer from chronic musculoskeletal back pain (lasting more than three months). The problem is so big that in the UK alone, it is estimated that 116m days of work are lost, a million hospital appointments are made and five million GP visits are scheduled – just for low back pain.

The physical agony is often not a standalone problem, however. 35% of people who suffer with low back pain are also diagnosed with depression, anxiety and social isolation.

NICE guidelines suggest that chronic back pain sufferers should have physical therapy as part of a broader package of treatment which includes psychological help. But we have been exploring how one single type of osteopathic treatment can be used to treat both the physical and mental conditions.

Full story at Medical Xpress

Stroke survivors may benefit from magnetic brain stimulation

A new meta-analysis of existing studies shows that a technique called repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation might be a useful tool to help stroke survivors regain the ability to walk independently.

Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation(rTMS) is a noninvasive brain stimulation technique; magnetic coils are placed on a person’s scalp, and short electromagnetic pulses are delivered to specific brain areas through the coil.

Although these pulses only cause an almost imperceptible “knocking or tapping” sensation for the patient undergoing the procedure, they reach into the brain, triggering electric currents that stimulate neurons.

Full story at Medical News Today

Failed arthritis drug may prevent opioid addiction

A drug already proven safe for use in people may prevent opioid tolerance and physical dependence when used in combination with opioid-based pain medications, according to a new study in mice.

Researchers have discovered that a compound previously tested to treat osteoarthritis pain appears to block neuropathic pain and decrease signs of opioid dependence.

When drug manufacturer Eli Lilly and Co. conducted human trials of the drug to treat osteoarthritis pain, they found that the drug lacked efficacy. Researchers had not, however, tested the drug’s use in treating other kinds of pain and lessening opioid dependence.

Full story at Futurity

Physical therapy helps recover arm function in chronic CVA

Physical therapy promotes the recovery of arm function and neuroplasticity in all chronic stroke patients, according to a study published online April 25 in the Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice.

Raquel Carvalho, P.T., from the University of Minho in Braga, Portugal, and colleagues assessed the effect of physical therapy based on problem-solving in recovering arm function in three chronic stroke patients. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (during motor imagery and performance), the action research arm test, the motor assessment scale, and the Fugl-Meyer assessment scale were used to evaluate neuroplasticity and function.

The researchers found that all patients recovered more than 20 percent after the intervention. At baseline, stroke patients had increased areas similar to healthy subjects during motor execution but not during imagination. After the intervention, all patients increased activity in the contralateral precentral area.

Full story at Medical Xpress

New robotic system interacts with rehabilitation patients to improve task performance

Researchers from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) in Beer-Sheva, Israel have demonstrated for the first time the feasibility of a robotic system that plays Tic Tac Toe with rehabilitation patients to improve real-life task performance.

The interdisciplinary research team designed a game with a robotic arm to simulate “3D Functional Activities of Daily Living”–actions people undertake daily, like drinking from a cup, that are often a focus of rehabilitation. Click here to watch the video.

Designing a social robot to help rehabilitate a patient is a new field which requires much research and experimentation in order to determine the optimal conditions. The research was published in Restorative Neurology and Neuroscience.

Full story at news-medical.net