Stroke Connection - May/June 2010 - (Page 5)
S T R O K E N OT E S | Connecting You to the World
This year’s American Stroke Association International Stroke Conference in San Antonio brought together stroke experts from all over the world. The February conference showcased the findings of researchers in neurology, pharmacology and rehabilitation. Here are some highlights.
Kick the Grandkids off the Wii
irtual reality game technology using
Virtual reality games may help survivors improve motor function
the Wii™ may help recovering stroke patients improve their motor function. The study found the virtual reality gaming system was safe and feasible strategy to improve motor function after stroke. The study focused on movements with survivors’ impaired arms to help both fine (small muscle) and gross (large muscle) motor function. Twenty survivors (average age 61) of mild to moderate ischemic or hemorrhagic strokes were randomized into two groups. One played recreational games (cards or Jenga, a block stacking and balancing game), and the other played Wii™ tennis and Wii™ Cooking Mama, which uses movements that simulate cutting a potato, peeling an onion, slicing meat and shredding cheese. Both groups received an intensive program of eight sessions, about 60 minutes each over two weeks, initiated about two months following a stroke. The study found no adverse effects in the Wii™ group, reflecting safety. The Wii™ group used the technology for about 364 minutes in total session time, reflecting its feasibility. The recreational therapy group’s total time was 388 minutes. Researchers recognized that the use of a virtualreality system allowed them to apply the concept of repetitive tasks, highintensity tasks and taskspecific activities. These activate special neurons involved in brain plasticity. Researchers found significant motor improvement in speed and extent of recovery with the Wii™ technology. The Wii™ group achieved a better motor function, both fine and gross, manifested by improvement in speed and grip strength. The Wii™ is a virtual reality video gaming system using wireless controllers that interact with the user. A motion detection system allows patients to follow their actions on a television screen with nearly real time sensory feedback.
Ultrasound Used in Stroke Treatment
Sound-wave powered clot busters safe for draining bleeding in brain
issolving clot-causing strokes with
ultrasound can safely drain bleeding in the brain, according to a new study. Researchers tested the safety and efficacy of combining the use of ultrasound with clotbusters delivered precisely into bleeding areas during an intraventricular (IVH) bleed (bleeding inside fluid-filled spaces of the brain) and intracerebral (ICH) bleed (bleeding in brain tissue). Nine ICH and IVH patients (average age 63) underwent treatment with the clot-busting drug tPA in conjunction with 24 hours of continuous ultrasound applied at the end of the
probe placed directly in the blood clot. The liquefied blood clots were drained through a tube. All nine patients had significant reductions in bleeding. Twenty-four hours after treatment, volume was reduced an average 59 percent for ICH patients and 45 percent in IVH patients. There were no significant instances of re-bleeding. Functional outcomes improved in seven of the nine patients at 30 days. One patient died. Compared to previous studies that did not use ultrasound with tPA, blood clots appeared to resolve faster in this study.
STROKECONNECTION May | June 2010
If you would like to try to load the digital publication without using Flash Player detection, please click here.