Mental Practice in Chronic, Stroke Induced Hemiparesis


Phase 2/3 Results N/A

Trial Description

Stroke is the leading cause of disability in the United States, producing motor impairments that compromise performance of valued activities. Hemiparesis (or weakness in one arm) is particularly disabling, is the primary impairment underlying stroke-related disability, and the most frequent impairment treated by therapists in the United States. This study will test efficacy of a promising technique in reducing arm disability and increasing function, thereby improving outcomes and health, reducing care costs, for community dwelling patients with stroke-induced hemiparesis.



  • Mental Practice Group Behavioral
    Intervention Desc: Patients are administered rehabilitative therapy targeting their affected arms on 3 days/week during a ten week period. Directly after the therapy session, they participate in targeted mental practice session in which they cognitively rehearse the movement that they just physically practiced.
    ARM 1: Kind: Experimental
    Label: Experimental: Mental Practice Group
  • Active Control Group Behavioral
    Intervention Desc: Individuals assigned to this group are administrated rehabilitative therapy targeting their affected arms in half four increments, occurring 3 days/week for 10 weeks. They also are administered an intervention in which they listen to a relaxation tape and/or tapes in which they receive instructions on exercises and information on stroke care.
    ARM 1: Kind: Experimental
    Label: Active Comparator: Active Control Group

Trial Design

  • Allocation: Randomized
  • Masking: Double Blind (Subject, Caregiver, Outcomes Assessor)
  • Purpose: Treatment
  • Endpoint: Efficacy Study
  • Intervention: Parallel Assignment


Type Measure Time Frame Safety Issue
Primary Change in movement in the affected fingers and wrist as measured by the Action Research Arm Test 2-3 weeks before intervention; 1 week after intervention; 3 months after intervention No