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European Journal of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine 2012 March;48(1):47-55


lingua: Inglese

Combined therapeutic application of botulinum toxin type A, low-frequency rTMS, and intensive occupational therapy for post-stroke spastic upper limb hemiparesis

Kakuda W., Abo M., Momosaki R., Yokoi A., Fukuda A., Ito H., Tominaga A., Umemori T., Kameda Y.

Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Jikei University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan


BACKGROUND: For spastic upper limb hemiparesis after stroke, we developed triple-element protocol of botulinum toxin type A (BoNTA) injection, low-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (LF-rTMS), and intensive occupational therapy (OT). Aim. To investigate the safety and feasibility of the protocol. Design. A preliminary study. Setting. At a university hospital. Population. Fourteen post-stroke patients with spastic upper limb hemiparesis (mean age: 54.9±9.2 years, time after onset: 87.1±48.2 months, ±SD).
METHODS: In all patients, BoNTA was injected into spastic muscles of the affected upper limb (maximum total dose: 240 units). Four weeks later, they were hospitalized to receive 22 sessions of 20-min LF-rTMS and 120-min intensive OT daily over 15 days. Motor function of the affected upper limb was evaluated mainly using Fugl-Meyer Assessment (FMA), Wolf Motor Function Test (WMFT), motor activity log (MAL), and the severity of spasticity was measured with modified Ashworth scale (MAS) at BoNTA injection, discharge and four weeks post-discharge.
RESULTS: All patients completed the protocol without any adverse effects. The FMA score and MAL scores, but not WMFT performance time, improved significantly at discharge. The MAS score of all examined muscles decreased significantly between BoNTA and discharge. The beneficial effect of the protocol on motor function and spasticity was almost maintained until four weeks after discharge.
CONCLUSION: The protocol is safe and feasible, although further larger studies are needed to confirm its efficacy.
Clinical Rehabilitation Impact. The protocol is a potentially useful neurorehabilitative approach for this patient population.

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