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Can brain-injured, partially-blind stroke patients regain some of their lost vision?

Research published by SAGE in Neurorehabilitation & Neural Repair

SAGE

Is it possible to offer hope for stroke patients who've lose part of their vision? A study published by SAGE in the journal Neurorehabilitation & Neural Repair explores that question.

The researchers studied visual restoration therapy for stroke patients, hypothesizing that the training would induce specific changes in the brain's response to stimuli, something demonstrated in animal experiments but never in humans with brain injury. The home-based therapy used repetitive stimulation of the zones adjacent to the blind area to modestly enlarge the field of vision of patients who had lost the ability to see off to the left or right in each eye.

"Our goal in this study was to determine whether therapy would produce a unique alteration in the brain's response to stimuli in the trained border-zone location compared with the non-trained portion of the seeing field," write the authors in the article. They concluded that, "visual restoration therapy seems to alter brain activity. Demonstration of a visual field-specific training effect on brain activity provides an important starting point for understanding the potential for visual therapy in partially-blind stroke patients."

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The article, "Brain Activity Associated with Stimulation Therapy of the Visual Borderzone in Hemianopic Stroke Patients," written by Randolph S. Marshall, MD, John J. Ferrera, MS, Anna Barnes, PhD, Xian Zhang, PhD, Katherine A. O'Brien, Mohamad Chmayssani, MD, Joy Hirsch, PhD, and Ronald M. Lazar, PhD, and published by SAGE in the journal Neurorehabilitation & Neural Repair, is available at no charge for a limited time at http://nnr.sagepub.com/cgi/rapidpdf/1545968307305522v2.

About Neurorehabilitation & Neural Repair

The official Journal of the American Society of Neurorehabilitation, published in association with the World Federation of NeuroRehabilitation, Neurorehabilitation & Neural Repair offers neurologists, neurosurgeons, physiatrists, rehabilitation nurses, discharge planners, social workers, basic scientists working in neural regeneration and plasticity, and physical, occupational, and speech therapists innovative and reliable reports relevant to functional recovery from neural injury and long term neurologic care. The journal's unique focus is evidence-based basic and clinical practice and research. http://nnr.sagepub.com/

About SAGE

SAGE is a leading international publisher of journals, books, and electronic media for academic, educational, and professional markets. Since 1965, SAGE has helped inform and educate a global community of scholars, practitioners, researchers, and students spanning a wide range of subject areas including business, humanities, social sciences, and science, technology and medicine. A privately owned corporation, SAGE has principal offices in Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, and Singapore. www.sagepublications.com

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