Jenna Blaschke, Amanda Vatinno, Gabrielle Scronce, Viswanathan Ramakrishnan and Na Jin Seo
Background: Sensory impairment severity may impact individual
stroke survivors’ motor recovery as well as their response to
peripheral sensory stimulation treatment.
Objective: To determine the effect of sensory impairment
level of individual stroke survivors on motor improvement with
therapy and peripheral sensory stimulation.
Methods: A secondary analysis of a pilot triple-blind
randomized controlled trial. Twelve chronic stroke survivors
participated in 2 weeks of hand task-practice therapy. They
were randomly assigned to the treatment group receiving
peripheral sensory stimulation or the control group receiving no
stimulation during the therapy. Sensory impairment level was
quantified as the pre-intervention sensory threshold. Motor
improvement was assessed as change in the Box and Block
Test score from pre to post-intervention. The association
between sensory impairment level and motor improvement
was examined using a regression analysis, accounting for
Results: Participants with better sensation (i.e., with lower
sensory threshold) had better motor improvement than
patients with worse sensation (i.e., with higher sensory
threshold). Sensory impairment level did not alter the effect of
peripheral sensory stimulation.
Conclusion: The level of sensory impairment can be utilized to
predict recovery potentials and direct rehabilitation
treatment for stroke survivors.