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The effectiveness of treatment for individuals with brain injury or stroke

July 20, 2016

In the current issue of NeuroRehabilitation leading researchers explore the effectiveness of several neurorehabilitation treatments for individuals with brain injury or stroke. A number of published articles have covered the issue of efficacy of neurorehabilitation, but only a few have discussed the issue of effectiveness.

"The goal of this special issue is to present real world applications of neurorehabilitation that showcase a diverse spectrum of effective therapeutic interventions after brain injury and stroke," explained guest editor Rick Parente, PhD, Professor, Psychology Department, Towson University, Towson, MD, USA. "The characteristics of these therapies that make them effective are that they are adaptable, measurable, and they provide gains that are tangible for patients and family members. All of these therapies are evidence based, which makes them excellent candidates for future research and development."

The Editors-in-Chief of NeuroRehabilitation, Nathan D. Zasler, MD, FAAPM&R, and Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, PhD, ABPP, have selected three articles that represent the advances in neurorehabilitation that contribute to patient care. These articles have been made freely available online as a service to the neurorehabilitation community.

Goodwin, Lincoln and Bateman evaluate whether a holistic neuropsychological rehabilitation program reduced reported symptoms of everyday dysexecutive behavior and carer strain. They also assessed whether aetiology interacts with the effects of rehabilitation. "Neuropsychological rehabilitation is effective in reducing client and carer reports of dysexecutive behaviors and carer strain. Rehabilitation can benefit clients with acquired brain injury and their families, even after the spontaneous recovery period. Also implicated is the importance of considering aetiology in practice," they commented. Their findings highlight the importance of service evaluation to assure efficacy of rehabilitation.

Nickels and Osborne look at how a treatment for aphasia that has a strong evidence base can be implemented cost-effectively by speech and language therapists. "Constraint Induced Aphasia Therapy (CIAT) has been shown to be effective in the treatment of aphasia, but clinicians have expressed concern regarding how far CIAT was practical to implement in clinical practice," they explained. They examine whether a more clinically viable form of CIAT is possible.

Shaw investigates the effectiveness of cognitive remediation strategies, as well as their efficacy in a range of settings, particularly in school. "As traumatic brain injury (TBI) survivors spend a majority of their time in school, school personnel should be trained and prepared to continue the rehabilitation process. Schools are also agents for successful community reintegration. Most importantly, with increased problem-solving abilities and social coping skills, TBI survivors will more successfully reintegrate into the community," she commented.
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Full contents of the current issue of NeuroRehabilitation are available at http://content.iospress.com/journals/neurorehabilitation/39/1

IOS Press

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