Thermotherapy Combined With Therapeutic Exercise Improves Muscle Strength and Depression in Patients With Ischemic Stroke.
Rehabil Nurs. 2019 Sep/Oct;44(5):254-262. PMID: 31479435
Yovita Dwi Setiyowati
PURPOSE: The study examined the effect of home-based thermotherapy combined with therapeutic exercise on muscle strength and depression in patients with ischemic stroke via a weekly evaluation over 4 weeks.
DESIGN/METHODS: A quasi-experimental, pre-/posttest research design without a control group was employed. A total of 22 patients participated. Self-reported daily logs were used to evaluate intervention adherence over the study period. The manual muscle testing and Aphasic Depression Rating Scale were administered at baseline and weekly for 4 weeks.
RESULTS: Muscle strength in both the upper and lower limbs significantly increased (p<.05), whereas the depression score significantly decreased (p<.05).
CONCLUSION: The intervention increased muscle strength and decreased depression during the first 3 months after stroke onset. The significant effects were found beginning during the third week of the intervention.
CLINICAL RELEVANCE: This intervention is inexpensive and can be easily applied by caregivers at home.