Recovery Mechanisms of Somatosensory Function in Stroke Patients: Implications of Brain Imaging Studies.

Recovery mechanisms of somatosensory function in stroke patients: implications of brain imaging studies.

Neurosci Bull. 2013 Mar 8;
Jang SH

Somatosensory dysfunction is associated with a high incidence of functional impairment and safety in patients with stroke. With developments in brain mapping techniques, many studies have addressed the recovery of various functions in such patients. However, relatively little is known about the mechanisms of recovery of somatosensory function. Based on the previous human studies, a review of 11 relevant studies on the mechanisms underlying the recovery of somatosensory function in stroke patients was conducted based on the following topics: (1) recovery of an injured somatosensory pathway, (2) peri-lesional reorganization, (3) contribution of the unaffected somatosensory cortex, (4) contribution of the secondary somatosensory cortex, and (5) mechanisms of recovery in patients with thalamic lesions. We believe that further studies in this field using combinations of diffusion tensor imaging, functional neuroimaging, and magnetoencephalography are needed. in addition, the clinical significance, critical period, and facilitatory strategies for each recovery mechanism should be clarified. HubMed – rehab


How Effective are Exercise-Based Injury Prevention Programmes for Soccer Players? : A Systematic Review.

Sports Med. 2013 Mar 8;
van Beijsterveldt AM, van der Horst N, van de Port IG, Backx FJ

BACKGROUND: The incidence of soccer (football) injuries is among the highest in sports. Despite this high rate, insufficient evidence is available on the efficacy of preventive training programmes on injury incidence. OBJECTIVE: To systematically study the evidence on preventive exercise-based training programmes to reduce the incidence of injuries in soccer. DATA SOURCES: The databases EMBASE/MEDLINE, PubMed, CINAHL, Cochrane Central Register of controlled trials, PEDro and SPORTDiscus™ were searched for relevant articles, from inception until 20 December 2011. The methodological quality of the included studies was assessed using the PEDro scale. STUDY SELECTION: The inclusion criteria for this review were (1) randomized controlled trials or controlled clinical trials; (2) primary outcome of the study is the number of soccer injuries and/or injury incidence; (3) intervention focusing on a preventive training programme, including a set of exercises aimed at improving strength, coordination, flexibility or agility; and (4) study sample of soccer players (no restrictions as to level of play, age or sex). The exclusion criteria were: (1) the article was not available as full text; (2) the article was not published in English, German or Dutch; and (3) the trial and/or training programme relates only to specific injuries and/or specific joints. To compare the effects of the different interventions, we calculated the incidence risk ratio (IRR) for each study. RESULTS: Six studies involving a total of 6,099 participants met the inclusion criteria. The results of the included studies were contradictory. Two of the six studies (one of high and one of moderate quality) reported a statistical significant reduction in terms of their primary outcome, i.e. injuries overall. Four of the six studies described an overall preventive effect (IRR<1), although the effect of one study was not statistically significant. The three studies that described a significant preventive effect were of high, moderate and low quality. CONCLUSIONS: Conflicting evidence has been found for the effectiveness of exercise-based programmes to prevent soccer injuries. Some reasons for the contradictory findings could be different study samples (in terms of sex and soccer type) in the included studies, differences between the intervention programmes implemented (in terms of content, training frequency and duration) and compliance with the programme. High-quality studies investigating the best type and intensity of exercises in a generic training programme are needed to reduce the incidence of injuries in soccer effectively. HubMed – rehab


Supported employment: cost-effectiveness across six European sites.

World Psychiatry. 2013 Feb; 12(1): 60-8
Knapp M, Patel A, Curran C, Latimer E, Catty J, Becker T, Drake RE, Fioritti A, Kilian R, Lauber C, Rössler W, Tomov T, van Busschbach J, Comas-Herrera A, White S, Wiersma D, Burns T

A high proportion of people with severe mental health problems are unemployed but would like to work. Individual Placement and Support (IPS) offers a promising approach to establishing people in paid employment. In a randomized controlled trial across six European countries, we investigated the economic case for IPS for people with severe mental health problems compared to standard vocational rehabilitation. Individuals (n=312) were randomized to receive either IPS or standard vocational services and followed for 18 months. Service use and outcome data were collected. Cost-effectiveness analysis was conducted with two primary outcomes: additional days worked in competitive settings and additional percentage of individuals who worked at least 1 day. Analyses distinguished country effects. A partial cost-benefit analysis was also conducted. IPS produced better outcomes than alternative vocational services at lower cost overall to the health and social care systems. This pattern also held in disaggregated analyses for five of the six European sites. The inclusion of imputed values for missing cost data supported these findings. IPS would be viewed as more cost-effective than standard vocational services. Further analysis demonstrated cost-benefit arguments for IPS. Compared to standard vocational rehabilitation services, IPS is, therefore, probably cost-saving and almost certainly more cost-effective as a way to help people with severe mental health problems into competitive employment. HubMed – rehab


Efficacy of Cognitive Rehabilitation Therapies for Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) in Older Adults: Working Toward a Theoretical Model and Evidence-Based Interventions.

Neuropsychol Rev. 2013 Mar 8;
Huckans M, Hutson L, Twamley E, Jak A, Kaye J, Storzbach D

To evaluate the efficacy of cognitive rehabilitation therapies (CRTs) for mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Our review revealed a need for evidence-based treatments for MCI and a lack of a theoretical rehabilitation model to guide the development and evaluation of these interventions. We have thus proposed a theoretical rehabilitation model of MCI that yields key intervention targets-cognitive compromise, functional compromise, neuropsychiatric symptoms, and modifiable risk and protective factors known to be associated with MCI and dementia. Our model additionally defines specific cognitive rehabilitation approaches that may directly or indirectly target key outcomes-restorative cognitive training, compensatory cognitive training, lifestyle interventions, and psychotherapeutic techniques. Fourteen randomized controlled trials met inclusion criteria and were reviewed. Studies markedly varied in terms of intervention approaches and selected outcome measures and were frequently hampered by design limitations. The bulk of the evidence suggested that CRTs can change targeted behaviors in individuals with MCI and that CRTs are associated with improvements in objective cognitive performance, but the pattern of effects on specific cognitive domains was inconsistent across studies. Other important outcomes (i.e., daily functioning, quality of life, neuropsychiatric symptom severity) were infrequently assessed across studies. Few studies evaluated long-term outcomes or the impact of CRTs on conversion rates from MCI to dementia or normal cognition. Overall, results from trials are promising but inconclusive. Additional well-designed and adequately powered trials are warranted and required before CRTs for MCI can be considered evidence-based. HubMed – rehab