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J Rehabil Med. 2009 Mar;41(4):242-6. doi: 10.2340/16501977-0320.

Effects of a functional electrical stimulation-assisted leg-cycling wheelchair on reducing spasticity of patients after stroke.

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1
Institute of Biomedical Engineering, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To determine whether short-term propulsion of a functional electrical stimulation-assisted leg-cycling wheelchair (FES-LW) in patients with stroke can reduce spasticity of the affected leg and whether FES has additional effects on reducing spasticity.

DESIGN:

Within-subject comparison.

SUBJECTS:

A total of 17 patients after stroke were recruited from the university hospital.

METHODS:

Subjects propelled 2 leg-cycling wheelchairs (the FES-LW and the LW) and a manual wheelchair along an oval pathway. The Modified Ashworth Scale (MAS), H reflex/maximal M response (H/M ratio) and relaxation index were used to evaluate the immediate effects on leg spasticity. The changes in MAS, H/M and relaxation index were used to evaluate the effect of FES in comparing 2 leg-cycling wheelchairs.

RESULTS:

The MAS and H/M ratio were significantly decreased and the relaxation index significantly increased by FES-LW and LW usage. For subjects with higher muscle tone, significant lowering of the changes in MAS, H/M ratio and higher relaxation index were found for FES-LW usage compared with LW usage.

CONCLUSION:

Leg spasticity is reduced after short-term propulsion of the FES-LW and LW. The application of FES has an additional effect on reducing spasticity in subjects with higher muscle tone.

PMID:
19247543
DOI:
10.2340/16501977-0320
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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