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J Rehabil Med. 2008 Apr;40(4):298-303. doi: 10.2340/16501977-0181.

Inhibition of the unaffected motor cortex by 1 Hz repetitive transcranical magnetic stimulation enhances motor performance and training effect of the paretic hand in patients with chronic stroke.

Author information

1
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine , Hospital of Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Japan. naoyuki@med.hokudai.ac.jp

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Recent reports demonstrated that low-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) over the unaffected hemisphere improved the affected hand function in chronic stroke patients. We investigated whether 1 Hz rTMS improved the motor learning of the affected hand in patients after stroke.

DESIGN:

A double-blind study.

PATIENTS:

Twenty patients with chronic subcortical stroke.

METHODS:

The patients were randomly assigned to receive either a sub-threshold rTMS over the unaffected hemisphere (1 Hz, 25 minutes) or sham stimulation, and all patients performed a pinching task after stimulation. We evaluated the motor function of the affected hand and the excitatory and inhibitory function of the affected motor cortex by transcranial magnetic stimulation.

RESULTS:

Compared with sham stimulation, rTMS induced an increase in the excitability of the affected motor cortex(p < 0.001) and an improvement in acceleration of the affected hand (p = 0.006). Moreover, the effect of motor training on pinch force was enhanced by rTMS (p < 0.001). These improvement in the motor function lasted for one week after rTMS and motor training (p < 0.001).

CONCLUSION:

rTMS improved the motor learning of the affected hand in patients after stroke; thus, it can apply as anew rehabilitation strategy for patients after stroke.

PMID:
18382826
DOI:
10.2340/16501977-0181
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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