Spontaneous Improvement in Postural Control after Stroke: A Longitudinal Prospective Study
This study aimed to investigate the possible spontaneous recovery in postural control in post-stroke survivors during quite standing at different periods from stroke event, using the center of pressure sway analysis (the antero-posterior and median-lateral direction pattern analysis). Twelve participants in the chronic post-stroke phase and twelve age-matched healthy subjects were barefoot and were instructed to maintain an upright standing position for 60s on a force platform. The data were collected in two conditions: eyes open and eyes closed. The stroke participants were evaluated in 3 different periods. The time and frequency domain analyses of center of pressure signal were performed in order to obtain center of pressure descriptors in both the antero-posterior and mediolateral directions. Statistical analysis was performed to compare groups, periods and conditions. The results pointed out a worst postural control when the visual feedback is off for pathological group: patients in the post-acute phase of stroke tend to rely more on visual information for postural control. The spontaneous balance recovery in individuals with post-acute stroke is characterized by increased visual dependency compared to normal subjects.