Tuesday, April 30th, 2019
Stroke is the leading cause of disability today. Many stroke survivors are left with a condition known as aphasia, which is a language disorder that affects the ability to communicate. Aphasia is most often associated with strokes that occur in the left side of the brain, as this is where the areas that control speech and language are found.
Monday, April 29th, 2019
The brain consists of two distinct halves, known as the right and left hemispheres. Each hemisphere is responsible for different tasks, including physically controlling the side of the body opposite it. When one hemisphere is damaged by a stroke, the brain may become unable to process or perceive what is occurring in and around the opposite side of the body. In severe cases, stroke patients may be unaware that their opposite side even exists and ignore it completely. This condition, known as hemineglect (also unilateral neglect, hemispatial neglect, or spatial neglect). Hemineglect is most prominent and lasts longer when a stroke damages the right side of the brain. However, damage may also occur on the left side of the brain, resulting in hemineglect on the right side of the body. As a matter of course, medical professionals test stroke patients to determine whether they are suffering from hemineglect.
Friday, April 26th, 2019
While a stroke is effectively an attack of the brain, just as a myocardial infarction is an attack of the heart, the brain does fight back against the damage caused by a stroke, and that’s what provides the best opportunity for stroke recovery. Generally, a stroke cuts off the flow of blood to the brain, thereby depriving brain cells of oxygen. If those cells go without oxygen long enough, they die, and brain function decreases. The recovery process relies on the ability of the brain to heal itself through neuroplasticity. Neuroplasticity occurs when brain cells regenerate, re-establish, and rearrange neural connections in response to the damage inflicted by a stroke. In effect, the brain works around the dead cells and attempts to construct other neural pathways to compensate. Physical, occupational, and speech therapy are designed to spark neuroplasticity, encouraging the brain to correct mental and physical deficits. The brain also temporarily increases its natural neuroplasticity in response to traumatic damage, which is why it’s so important to begin the rehabilitation process shortly after a stroke occurs.
Wednesday, April 24th, 2019
Foot drop is a common disability, affecting millions worldwide. People suffering from foot drop struggle with limited mobility and have an increased risk of injury from slips and falls. Fortunately, the orthotics market offers a multitude of products engineered to address many different and complex mobility issues. There are many effective foot drop supports, ranging from larger ankle-foot orthosis braces (AFO brace) to versatile external strap-on support systems like the SaeboStep — a state-of-the-art orthotic designed to fit any shoe. This post will describe the condition of foot drop and answer many of the most frequently asked questions about foot drop, what is an AFO brace, and what to consider when shopping for an effective foot drop brace solution.
Saturday, April 20th, 2019
Strokes are the leading cause of disability in the United States, and the extent and permanence of stroke-related disabilities depend on one thing — oxygen. Strokes cause damage by disrupting the flow of oxygen to the brain, leading to brain cell death. Depending on the part of the brain affected, the stroke patient may suffer functional disabilities. Rehabilitation strategies center around stimulating the brain so that it can repair or work around the damaged cells, creating new connections and neural pathways. However, what works for one stroke patient may not work for another. One alternative treatment that may be successful in improving physical and mental function after a stroke is hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT). Even years after a stroke, HBOT has reversed or reduced resulting disabilities.
Friday, April 19th, 2019
According to the American Stroke Association, strokes are the fifth most common cause of death and a leading cause of disability in the United States. While some individuals do recover completely from a stroke, almost two-thirds are left with lingering physical deficits. The goal of physical and occupational therapy is to a
Tuesday, April 16th, 2019
Strokes are the leading cause of disability in the United States. A stroke occurs when oxygen and nutrients are unable to reach the brain, because of either a blood clot or a ruptured artery. When brain cells are starved of oxygen, they die, and the function those cells provide is impacted. The effect of a stroke depends on many variables, including the location of the obstruction or rupture and how much brain tissue is damaged. Without proper and immediate medical treatment, a stroke may cause long-term disabilities. Most post-stroke therapy focuses on recovering function. For example, physical therapy works to improve mobility and balance, occupational therapy is designed to increase independence with tasks of daily living, and speech therapy treats speech, language and swallowing problems. However, stroke patients may also experience psychosocial problems, such as depression or anxiety. Art therapy has proven to be an effective solution.
Thursday, March 14th, 2019
Currently, there are more than 6 million stroke survivors in the United States. Unfortunately, approximately 80 percent of stroke survivors experience some type of motor deficit as a result of their stroke. These deficits often include diminished strength in the hands, which can make the basic tasks many of us may take for granted a challenge. This can result in everyday functions such as cutting food or getting dressed becoming exhausting and burdensome.
Friday, March 8th, 2019
Coy’s life before his stroke on December 2, 2018, was fun and fulfilling. He gathered regularly with friends and family, was a talented fast-talking auctioneer, traveled all over to tractor shows, and raised family of goats on a small farm. Like many other stroke survivors, Coy’s stroke caused his right dominant arm and hand to be almost entirely paralyzed. He also struggled to pay attention to his affected side—a very common yet disabling condition that can be a safety concern and interferes with regaining use of the weaker side.
Monday, March 4th, 2019
Experiencing a stroke can have a huge impact on the human body. The side effects and complications of stroke are myriad, including weakness or paralysis, inability to speak, vision problems, and fatigue, among others. There is almost no part of the body that is completely immune to the effects of a stroke. One important body part often impacted by the degenerative neuromuscular effect of stroke is the foot, specifically the toes.