All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Edward Taub

Advisory Committee Members

Gitendra Uswatte

Victor W Mark

Mark S Bolding

Thomas A Novack

Document Type

Dissertation

Date of Award

2017

Degree Name by School

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) College of Arts and Sciences

Abstract

Structural grey matter changes have previously been observed following treatment with Constraint-Induced Movement (CI) therapy in adults with stroke and multiple sclerosis, as well as children with cerebral palsy. The current study examined similarities and differences in pat-terns of neuroplastic change across these three patient populations after treatment with CI thera-py. Longitudinal voxel-based morphometry (VBM) was used to quantify grey matter change. Widespread grey matter increases were detected in all three patient populations. These included consistent bilateral changes in primary and associated sensorimotor areas and hippocampus in the three different populations, despite the differing etiologies. Additionally, less consistent patterns of change were detected in each study population in cortical areas beyond those that typically play a role in sensorimotor ability. These patterns of grey matter increase were unique to patients treated with CI therapy and were not found in the corresponding control groups of each individual study. Taken together, these results suggest that CI therapy may enhance or induce neuroplasticity during the process of recovering real-world motor function after a period of chronic deficit. This process does not appear to occur in control groups of patients treated with comparison therapies.

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