Navigation Links
Pushing the brain to find new pathways
Date:11/17/2009

COLUMBIA, Mo. Until recently, scientists believed that, following a stroke, a patient had about six months to regain any lost function. After that, patients would be forced to compensate for the lost function by focusing on their remaining abilities. Although this belief has been refuted, a University of Missouri occupational therapy professor believes that the current health system is still not giving patients enough time to recover and underestimating what the human brain can do given the right conditions.

In a recent article for OT Practice Magazine, Guy McCormack, clinical professor and chair of the occupational therapy and occupational science department at the MU School of Health Professions, argues that health practitioners believe their clients need more time and motivation to reclaim lost functions, such as the use of an arm, hand or leg. With today's therapies, it is possible for patients to regain more function than ever thought possible, McCormack said.

"Patients are able to regain function due to the principle of neuroplasticity, or the brain's ability to change, especially when patients continue therapy long after their injuries," McCormack said. "Therapists once believed the brain doesn't develop new neurons; but, now they know neurons change their shape and create new branches to connect with other neurons, rewiring the brain following an injury or trauma."

Neuroplasticity has been gaining more acceptance in the occupational therapy community, McCormack said. Occupational therapists are forcing the nervous system into action by working with the affected extremity, thereby building new pathways in the brain. Some therapists are using virtual reality due to its ability to deliver feedback faster.

The evidence suggests that the nervous system can recover, but it needs time and encouragement two things McCormack believes are hard to obtain. With healthcare reform being discussed in the United States, McCormack hopes legislators will investigate supporting long-term intervention therapy.

"It seems like the current system of rehabilitation isn't conducive to rehabilitation because we don't give patients enough time to rehabilitate," McCormack said. "We need to look at long-term therapies. In the end, they might prove to be more cost effective."

The idea of neuroplasticity can be applied to most people looking to reclaim certain skills, including adults who have suffered a stroke and, possibly, children with autism, McCormack said.


'/>"/>

Contact: Christian Basi
BasiC@missouri.edu
573-882-4430
University of Missouri-Columbia
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. 50,000 Young People Dance to Celebrate Achievements in Pushing Back HIV and AIDS
2. Many Texas Docs Not Pushing HPV Vaccine for Girls
3. Autism Stats Exaggerated: Parents Pushing Back This Weekend
4. Draining away brains toxic protein to stop Alzheimers
5. Vision restoration therapy shown to improve brain activity in brain injured patients
6. Clinical depression linked to abnormal emotional brain circuits
7. Brain imaging reveals breakdown of normal emotional processing
8. Brain cells work differently than previously thought
9. Vaccine Stops Alzheimers Brain Tangles
10. Research may unlock mystery of autisms origin in the brain
11. Scientists Spot Brains Free Will Center
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/13/2016)... Coral Springs, FL (PRWEB) , ... February 13, 2016 , ... ... on the environmental impact of American businesses. , The increasingly modern world of ... rely more often on non-renewable energy sources such as oil and coal, which pollutes ...
(Date:2/13/2016)... Canada (PRWEB) , ... February 13, 2016 , ... In ... foot forward. They’ll groom themselves to perfection, go out of their way to be ... date – just take a look at any online dating profile. , A ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... The law firm of Morrow, ... Parishes. The purpose of these scholarships is to encourage applicants to pursue a ... seek employment within these two parishes. , “We have available jobs in St. ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... Falls Church, VA (PRWEB) , ... February 12, ... ... in Store?, Feb. 29, 2016 — 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. EST, ... burner issue in the life cycle of pharmaceutical products, garnering increased attention from ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... T.E.N., a technology and information ... ISE Southeast Awards 2016. Finalists and winners of the ISE® Awards for both ... and Awards Gala on March 15, 2016 at the Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/11/2016)... , Feb. 11, 2016 Potrero Medical, Inc., the ... to announce the appointment of George M. Rapier, III ... San Antonio, TX , WellMed is one of the ... patients and HMO members in Texas ... 1990 out of his own internal medicine practice, he has ...
(Date:2/11/2016)...  MiMedx Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: MDXG ), the ... other birth tissues, human skin and bone, and patent-protected ... products and therapies, announced today that it will present ... in New York , NY.  Parker ... Senken , Chief Financial Officer and Chris Cashman ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... , Feb. 11, 2016  AfterPill.com is reporting ... recommend alcohol abstinence for all women who are at ... the U.S. each year and raises the risks of ... --> According to the Guttmacher Institute, ... of women of child-bearing age, who have sex without ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: