Vagus nerve stimulation and upper limb rehabilitation

Dawson, J. and McGrane, F. (2016) Vagus nerve stimulation and upper limb rehabilitation. Current Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Reports, 4(3), pp. 186-189. (doi: 10.1007/s40141-016-0129-2)

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Purpose of Review: This article will review the evidence for the use of vagus nerve stimulation to drive the growth of new neural pathways during upper limb rehabilitation and improve functional recovery after stroke. Recent Findings: Approximately 85 % of patients with stroke present with arm weakness and 60 % of stroke survivors with poorly functioning arms at 1 week do not recover meaningful function by 6 months. The mainstay of current treatment is intensive, task-specific and repetitive rehabilitation therapy or occasionally methods such as constraint-induced movement therapy and robotic therapy. The effects of these treatments are modest, and recent studies have suggested that augmentation of neuroplasticity is required to more fully recover motor function. Summary: Novel treatments are needed to improve recovery of upper limb function after stroke. We will review the evidence for the use of vagal nerve stimulation paired with rehabilitation drive neuroplasticity specific to upper limb function.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Dawson, Professor Jesse
Authors: Dawson, J., and McGrane, F.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Cardiovascular & Metabolic Health
Journal Name:Current Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Reports
ISSN (Online):2167-4833
Published Online:01 August 2016

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