Pediatric constraint-induced movement therapy: a promising intervention for childhood hemiparesis.

Pediatrics and Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland.
Topics in Stroke Rehabilitation (Impact Factor: 1.22). 01/2009; 16(5):339-45. DOI: 10.1310/tsr1605-339
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Experimental and clinical evidence is accumulating that supports the assertion that the damaged human brain is capable of responding to sensory stimulation in a sufficient manner to result in sustainable and useful benefits. The intensity and duration of therapeutic maneuvers that elicit improvement are under active investigation. Recent studies in animals, adults, and children with hemiparesis have shown that constraint of the less involved upper limb coupled with a behavioral program that repetitively encourages graded unilateral movements can result in long-term "new" functional activities. Constraint-induced movement therapy (CIMT) is a promising approach for treatment of children with stroke-related hemiparesis from either prenatal or postnatal causes due to the enhanced neuroplasticity of the brain during early life.