Inclusion Criteria- first episode of unilateral stroke.
- the definition of stroke was according to the World Health Organization (WHO) criteria (Hatano 1976), confirmed by computerized tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).
- older than 20 years.
- had maximum inspiratory pressure (MIP) values lower than 90% of those predicted and adjusted for age and sex.
- facial palsy, which could not prevent proper labial occlusion.
- ability to understand and follow simple verbal instructions.
- no receptive aphasia.
- not undergone thoracic or abdominal surgery.
Exclusion Criteria- unable to perform the tests.
- impaired level of consciousness and evidence of gross cognitive impairment.
- excluded patients with comorbidities of respiratory system disease (e.g. chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, cystic fibrosis), or other diseases leading to the impairment of respiratory muscle (e.g. myasthenia gravis).