Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository

Degree

Master of Science

Program

Health and Rehabilitation Sciences

Supervisor

Dr. Kara K. Patterson

Abstract

Despite extensive rehabilitation post-stroke gait remains slow, variable and asymmetric. There is a need for simple interventions to improve lower-extremity motor control and walking ability. Mirror therapy is a promising intervention though little attention has focused on its use on the lower-extremities post-stroke. This thesis investigates the feasibility and potential effects of a bilateral lower-extremity mirror therapy intervention (LE-MT) post-stroke. A case series involving three participants, who performed twelve 30 minute sessions of LE-MT over four weeks, is presented. Session duration and number of repetitions completed improved over the course of the intervention indicating LE-MT post-stroke is feasible. Some cases demonstrated improved motor recovery of the leg and clinically meaningful improvements to gait velocity and step variability post-intervention indicating some potential benefits of LE-MT. Future directions will identify who may respond best to LE-MT, investigate the dose-response relationship and the underlying mechanisms of the observed improvements associated with LE-MT.


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