Purton, J, Sim, J and Hunter, SM (2022) Stroke survivors’ views on their priorities for upper-limb recovery and the availability of therapy services after stroke: a longitudinal, phenomenological study. Disability and Rehabilitation. ISSN 0963-8288 (In Press)

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Forty percent of stroke survivors have a persistent lack of function in the upper limb, causing significant disability. Most personal-care tasks and meaningful activities require bi-manual function of both upper limbs. However, lower-limb mobility is often viewed as the priority in stroke services. Perspectives of stroke survivors on priorities for upper-limb recovery and therapy have not been investigated in detail. Therefore, this study aimed to explore their views.

Materials and methods
Thirteen stroke survivors each engaged in up to four semi-structured interviews over 18 months. A phenomenological approach guided the research.

Three themes were identified. Priorities change on coming home: recovery of walking is a priority early after stroke but upper-limb recovery becomes equally important over time, particularly once living at home. Limited therapy services: therapy has a short duration, prioritizes lower-limb mobility, and is short-lived in the community; people feel abandoned by services. Active partners in recovery: stroke survivors want intermittent access to review and advice so they can be active partners with therapists to manage their upper-limb recovery.

Therapy services should recognize stroke survivors’ changing priorities and work with them as active partners in upper-limb recovery. Intermittent access to review and advice should be included in service design.

Implications for rehabilitation
Strokesurvivors’ priorities may change over timefromrecovery ofwalking toward upper-limb recovery.
Post-strokeservicescan be perceived as insufficient to meet the needs ofstrokesurvivors who want to participate
actively in rehabilitation oftheir upper limb.
Strokesurvivors may prefer services thatare moreflexibleto provideregular reviewoftheir progress,access to
guidanceand support to self-managetheir recovery.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: The final version of this article and all relevant information related to it, including copyrights, can be found on the publisher website.
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Divisions: Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > School of Allied Health Professions
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 14 Sep 2022 09:37
Last Modified: 14 Sep 2022 09:37
URI: https://eprints.keele.ac.uk/id/eprint/11410

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