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Treadmill Workouts Help Stroke Survivors
Date:8/28/2008

onths after the stroke, Hanley noted.

"The average stroke patient now has about eight physical therapy sessions over six to 12 weeks," Hanley said.

The study, published in the Aug. 29 issue of the journal Stroke, shows that treadmill work "should be part of standard treatment for every stroke survivor who has a walking habit," Luft said.

That may not be an easily achievable goal, Luft acknowledged. "Most physical therapy departments have treadmills, but they don't use them to the extent that we used them in the study," he said.

And stroke survivors can't just climb on a treadmill and start walking, Luft said. "Because this is exhausting, it should always be done under supervision," he said. "There is always the risk of running into heart problems and falling. We used special treadmills with handrails and also monitored the heart rate to achieve the level of exertion we needed."

Nevertheless, Hanley said, "the study defies current practice."

More information

Learn more about stroke rehabilitation from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.



SOURCES: Andreas Luft, M.D., professor of clinical neurology and neurorehabilitation, University of Zurich, Switzerland; Daniel Hanley, M.D., professor of neurology, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore; Aug. 29, 2008, Stroke


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