Mirror therapy (MT) combined with mesh glove (MG) afferent stimulation (MT + MG) has been suggested as an effective intervention for motor recovery in patients with stroke. This study aimed to further determine the treatment effects of the MT + MG approach on muscular properties, sensorimotor functions, and daily function.
This was a single-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study. Forty-eight participants with chronic stroke were recruited from medical centers and were randomly assigned to the MT, MT + MG, and MT with sham MG stimulation (MT + sham) groups. The intervention consisted of 1.5 hrs/day, 5 days/wk for 4 wks. Primary outcomes were the Fugl-Meyer Assessment and muscular properties (muscle tone and stiffness). Secondary outcomes included measures of sensorimotor and daily functions.
Compared with the MT and MT + sham groups, the MT + MG group demonstrated improved muscular properties. The MT + MG and MT + sham groups showed greater improvement in manual dexterity and daily function than the MT group did. No beneficial effects on the Fugl-Meyer Assessment and other sensorimotor outcomes were found for the MT + MG group.
Although no significant group differences were found in the Fugl-Meyer Assessment, MT + MG induced distinctive effects on muscular properties, manual dexterity, and daily function.
From the Department of Occupational Therapy and Graduate Institute of Behavioral Sciences, College of Medicine, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan (YL, CW, CL, JL); Healthy Aging Research Center, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan (YL, CW); School of Occupational Therapy, College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei (KL); Division of Occupational Therapy, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, National Taiwan University Hospital, Taipei (KL); Children Are Us Foundation, Taipei (CL); Division of Occupational Therapy, Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Shuang Ho Hospital, New Taipei City (JL); Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital at Linkou, Taoyuan (CC); and Graduate Institute of Early Intervention, College of Medicine, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan, Taiwan (CC).
All correspondence and requests for reprints should be addressed to: Ching-yi Wu, ScD, Department of Occupational Therapy and Graduate Institute of Behavioral Sciences, College of Medicine, Chang Gung University, 259 Wenhua 1st Rd, Taoyuan 333, Taiwan.
Ya-yun Lee and Keh-chung Lin are joint first authors.
This project was supported in part by the National Health Research Institutes (NHRI-EX103-10010PI), the National Science Council (NSC-100-2314-B-002-008-MY3, NSC 102-2314-B-002-154-MY2, and NSC102-2628-B-182-005-MY3), Healthy Ageing Research Center at Chang Gung University (EMRPD1D0291, CMRPD1B0331), and Chang Gung Memorial Hospital (CMRPD1C0402) in Taiwan.
Financial disclosure statements have been obtained, and no conflicts of interest have been reported by the authors or by any individuals in control of the content of this article.