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Eur J Neurol. 2009 Dec;16(12):1323-30. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-1331.2009.02746.x. Epub 2009 Sep 23.

Role of 1 and 3 Hz repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation on motor function recovery after acute ischaemic stroke.

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Department of Neurology, Assiut University Hospital, Assiut, Egypt.



The purpose of this study was to compare the long-term effect of five daily sessions of 1 vs. 3 Hz repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) on motor recovery in acute stroke.


A total of 36 patients with acute ischaemic stroke participated in the study. The patients were randomly assigned into one of three groups; the first and second groups received real rTMS; 1 and 3 Hz and third group received sham stimulation, daily for 5 days. Motor disability was assessed before and after the last session, and then after first, second and third month. Cortical excitability was assessed before and after the second and fifth session. The outcome measure was clinical disability at 3 months post-rTMS.


No significant differences were found in basal rating scales between the three groups. At the 3-month time point, both of the real rTMS groups had improved significantly more in different rating scales than the sham group; in addition, the 1 Hz group performed better than the 3 Hz group. Measures of cortical excitability immediately after the last session showed that the 1 Hz group had reduced excitability of the non-stroke hemisphere and increased excitability of the stroke hemisphere, whereas the 3 Hz group only showed increased excitability of the stroke hemisphere.


These results confirm that five daily sessions of rTMS over motor cortex using either 1 Hz over the unaffected hemisphere or 3 Hz over the affected hemisphere can enhance recovery. At 3 months, the improvement was more pronounced in 1 Hz group.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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