Personalised online upper-limb physiotherapy for stroke survivors during the inpatient phase: A feasibility study

Alhusayni, A. I. S., Cowey, E. S. , Coulter, E. , Barber, M. and Paul, L. (2023) Personalised online upper-limb physiotherapy for stroke survivors during the inpatient phase: A feasibility study. Healthcare, 11(18), 2582. (doi: 10.3390/healthcare11182582) (PMID:37761779) (PMCID:PMC10531470)

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Background: After a stroke, inpatients often receive less than the recommended dose of therapy. Telerehabilitation may assist by providing personalised rehabilitation programmes without face-to-face therapy time. This study aimed to evaluate the acceptability and feasibility of an individualised programme of upper-limb rehabilitation that is delivered via an online rehabilitation platform for inpatient stroke survivors. Methods: Stroke survivors were recruited from three stroke units in one NHS Board in Scotland and randomised to the intervention (personalised upper-limb exercise programme delivered via an online physiotherapy platform for four weeks, up to 30 min five times per week, in addition to usual care) or the control group (usual care). The main outcomes are related to recruitment, attrition, adherence and safety. The clinical measures were the Action Research Arm Test, Trunk Impairment Scale and Modified Ashworth Scale. The intervention participants, their carers and physiotherapists completed questionnaires on the acceptability of the intervention. Results: Twenty-six participants, 42% males, were recruited around three weeks post-stroke, on average. There were 13 participants in each group, with a mean age of 69 years (SD of 12) and 67 years (SD of 11) for the control and intervention groups, respectively. Overall, 47% of those screened for eligibility were randomised, and attrition was 23% in the intervention group mainly due to discharge before the end of the intervention. Participants who adhered to their programme (completed more than two-thirds), generally those with an engaged carer, demonstrated a trend toward improved clinical outcomes. Overall, the patients, carers and physiotherapists were positive regarding the intervention. There was a total of five reported adverse events, none of which were related to the study. Conclusion: An upper-limb unsupervised exercise intervention using an online physiotherapy platform for inpatient stroke survivors is feasible, safe and acceptable to patients, carers and physiotherapists. A fully powered RCT is warranted to investigate the clinical- and cost-effectiveness of such interventions for this patient group.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Cowey, Professor Eileen and Alhusayni, Abdullah Ibrahim S and Barber, Dr Mark and Coulter, Dr Elaine and Paul, Dr Lorna
Creator Roles:
Alhusayni, A. I. S.Conceptualization, Methodology, Formal analysis, Investigation, Resources, Data curation, Writing – original draft, Writing – review and editing, Visualization, Funding acquisition
Cowey, E.Conceptualization, Methodology, Formal analysis, Investigation, Writing – review and editing, Visualization, Supervision
Coulter, E.Conceptualization, Formal analysis
Barber, M.Conceptualization, Resources, Writing – review and editing
Paul, L.Conceptualization, Methodology, Resources, Writing – review and editing, Visualization, Supervision
Authors: Alhusayni, A. I. S., Cowey, E. S., Coulter, E., Barber, M., and Paul, L.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Medicine, Dentistry & Nursing > Nursing and Health Care
Journal Name:Healthcare
ISSN (Online):2227-9032
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2023 by the Authors
First Published:First published in Healthcare 11(18):2582
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons licence

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