Faculty Advisor(s)

Amy J. Litterini

Document Type

Course Paper

Publication Date



© 2015 Sarah Richardson


Background and Purpose: Stroke is the leading cause of serious long-term disability for American adults. Most stroke survivors receive physical therapy (PT), and task-oriented rehabilitation is one novel approach known to benefit stroke survivors. The purpose of this case report is to illustrate the outcomes of a task-oriented approach to PT interventions on a patient >12 months post stroke. The unique aims were to 1) outline possible benefits in function from repetitive task-oriented training techniques and 2) document outcomes of a patient who had received PT services >12 months post stroke. Case Description: The patient was an 82 year-old female who was suffering from late effects of two separate stroke events. She was seen for outpatient PT for one hour, two times weekly for a total of 12 weeks during this episode of care. The following outcome measures were used: Function in Sitting Test (FIST), Tinetti, and a modified Gait Speed Test. Outcomes: Improvements in balance and functional mobility on the Tinetti (4/28 to 16/28) and Function in Sitting Test (43/56 to 56/56) were noted. Improved strength was noted based on manual muscle testing of the quadriceps and hamstrings. This patient was able to achieve independent bed mobility, increase her walking distance, and decrease the level of gait assistance needed (from max to contact guard) with improved quality of gait. No significant changes were noted in gait speed. Modified Ashworth Scale indicated no change in spasticity. Discussion: The findings suggest that a task-oriented approach to physical therapy intervention may have been a feasible method for this individual with chronic effects of stroke. Further research is needed to validate these results for similar patients.


The case report poster for this paper can be found here:


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