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J Phys Ther Sci. 2013 Oct;25(10):1321-4. doi: 10.1589/jpts.25.1321. Epub 2013 Nov 20.

An ankle proprioceptive control program improves balance, gait ability of chronic stroke patients.

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1
Graduate School of Physical Therapy, Sahmyook University, Republic of Korea.

Abstract

[Purpose] Balance and gait ability determine to a large degree the level of independence of daily living which is an important goal of rehabilitation. This study was conducted in order to examine the effectiveness of an ankle proprioceptive control program on ankle muscle strength, balance, and gait of chronic stroke patients. [Methods] Thirteen chronic stroke patients more than six months post-stroke were recruited. All subjects received ankle proprioceptive control training for 30 minutes per session, two days per week, over a period of six weeks. Outcome measures were ankle strength (BTE-Primus), the Timed Up and Go test (TUG), and spatiotemporal parameters measured by a GAITRite instrument. [Results] Significant improvements in ankle dorsiflexor strength, TUG, gait speed and cadence, step length, and stride length were observed on the paretic side. [Conclusion] The results of this study provide evidence in support of incorporation of an ankle proprioceptive control program for effective improvement of both balance and gait ability of chronic stroke patients. The findings of this study suggest the feasibility and suitability of an ankle proprioceptive control program for chronic stroke patients.

KEYWORDS:

Ankle; Proprioception; Stroke

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