Minor adverse events, mostly falls, were reported by about 56 percent of participants, with no significant differences among groups. Patients who started locomotor therapy at two months and were severely impaired, however, were more likely to report multiple falls.
Dr. Walter Koroshetz, deputy director of the U.S. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), said few studies have compared stroke therapies and provided evidence "in such very rigorous fashion."
"So this is probably the tip of the iceberg," he said. "It's precedent-setting . . . with very practical results."
Funding for the study was provided by NINDS and the National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research.
To learn more about strokes, visit the U.S. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.
SOURCES: Pamela Woods Duncan, Ph.D., professor, community and family medicine, Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, N.C.; Richard B. Libman, M.D., chief, division of vascular neurology, Long Island Jewish Medical Center, New Hyde Park, N.Y.; Walter Koroshetz, M.D., deputy director, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, Bethesda, Md.; May 26, 2011 New England Journal of Medicine
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