Management of Spasticity in the Upper Limb following Stroke
How to assess and measure for spasticity, options for intervention and ideas for early training to reduce secondary complications
17th January 2022
Trainers: Lucy Gwynne, Physiotherapy Lead for Neuro-Rehabilitation for South Warwickshire Foundation Trust
Michelle Kudhail, Inspire Neurocare, Clinical Director
The upper limb can sometimes take a lower priority in the early stages following stroke or head injury. The focus of the patient as well as hospital staff is usually to become mobile and return home. The best place for any patient is within their own environment so to facilitate this there is a tendency for the physiotherapists to concentrate on mobility and transfers with the Occupational therapists busy enabling activities of daily living and setting up the home environment. Often it is not until later on when the patient is attending an outpatient or outreach service that they ask about their upper limb and if anything can be done to ‘make it work’. At this time the limb can be showing signs of recovery but it is stiff and sometimes painful. So what can we do in the early stages to help reduce stiffness and manage spasticity and what can we do to help the patient help themselves.
- To provide an overview of assessment and management of spasticity with a particular focus on the upper limb.
- To provide you with the tools to set up an early self-monitored practice programme that the patients can follow.
- We will also look at the types of feedback that are available and discuss attentional focus and how that is particularly important for the upper limb.
- Assessment and measurement of spasticity
- Pathophysiology of spasticity
- Management strategy – physical and medical intervention
- Giving feedback when training - how much is enough
- Attentional focus and implications for training
- To identify the assessments used to measure spasticity
- To have an understanding of the pathophysiology of spasticity
- To identify muscles that may require injection of Botulinum toxin (focussing on the upper limb)
- To formulate a treatment plan for managing upper limb spasticity
- To be able to set up a self-monitored practice programme
CPD: 6.5 hours
Limited funded places may be available for AHPs & Nurses working for the NHS within the East Midlands.