In Lithuania, the stroke is not only medical, but social issue as well, since only 20% of patients suffering from stroke remain active at work. Yearly stroke incidence in Lithuania is 7000–8000 cases. The most common outcome of stroke is unilateral paralysis (hemiplegia) followed by disorders of coordination, balance, and movements. Due to dysfunctions of movements, self-care, cognition, behavior, and communication, some part of stroke patients remains disabled. They need assistance and care provided by other people. Occupational therapy, which is part of rehabilitation of patients after stroke, is directed to independence training. There are scarce data related to effectiveness of occupational therapy depending on motor, cognitive, and psychosocial dysfunctions. Goals of study were to estimate effectiveness of occupational therapy at the early stage of rehabilitation depending on type of stroke, localization of brain injury, grade of lesion, age, and gender, to identify factors influencing effectiveness of occupational therapy, and to estimate their positive predictive value. The study included 106 patients at the early stage of rehabilitation, who were admitted to Department of Neurorehabilitation after stabilization of clinical condition from Departments of Neurology and Neurosurgery (mean duration of 14±2 days after stroke). The program of occupational therapy was not fulfilled by 6 patients: 2 patients were transferred to Nursing Hospital due to severe condition, and 4 patients were discharged prematurely and continued rehabilitation in outpatient setting. Hence, study population consisted of 100 subjects (47 men and 53 women) who were diagnosed with stroke (ischemic or hemorrhagic). Patient’s functional status and disorders of activities were evaluated using Barthel Index and Functional Independence Measure. Complexes of occupational therapy were adjusted according to examination of patient’s disorders of activities, age, grade of lesion, other diseases, and complications during rehabilitation process. Effectiveness of occupational therapy in patients after stroke at then early stage of rehabilitation was influenced by gender, age, degree of lesion, type of stroke. Better effectiveness of occupational therapy was observed in men (P<0.05), persons younger than 59 years (P<0.05), persons with hemiparesis (P<0.05) and hemorrhagic stroke (P<0.05). Low effectiveness in stroke patients at the early stage of rehabilitation was influenced by neglect (P<0.05), hemiplegia (P<0.001), and older age of patient (P<0.05). Application of individualized occupational therapy complexes for stroke patients at the early stage of rehabilitation with consideration of motoric and cognitive-psychosocial disorders, significantly improves recovery of impaired functions, though occupational therapy should be continued in later rehabilitation stages, since patients after early stage of rehabilitation still have limited independence in daily activities.
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