2015 Volume 27 Issue 4 Pages 1045-1047
[Purpose] This study aimed to determine the effect of mirror therapy (MT) with transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) on the recovery of the upper extremity function of chronic stroke patients. [Subjects] Twenty-seven patients at least 6 months after stroke onset were divided randomly into an experimental group (14 patients) and a control group (13 patients). [Methods] All subjects received tDCS for 20 min followed by a 5 min rest. Then the experimental group received MT while the control group conducted the same exercises as the experimental group using a mirror that did not show the non-paretic upper extremity. The groups performed the same exercises for 20 min. All subjects received this intervention for 45-min three times a week for 6 weeks. [Results] After the intervention, the experimental group showed significant improvements in the box and block test (BBT), grip strength, and the Fugl-Meyer assessment (FMA), and a significant decrease in the Jebsen-Taylor test. The control group showed a significant increase in grip strength after the intervention, and a significant decrease in the Jebsen-Taylor test. Comparison of the result after the intervention revealed that the experimental group showed more significant increases in the BBT and grip strength than the control group. [Conclusion] These results show that MT with tDCS has a positive effect on the functional recovery of the upper extremity of stroke patients, through activating motor regions in the brain, and thus plays an important role in recovery of neuroplasticity.