Rehabilitation after Stroke includes motoric, cognitive and speech recovery

Stroke is an acute cerebrovascular accident. It can happen to anyone at any time.

Ischemic stroke, or cerebral infarction, most often occurs in patients older than 60 years with a history of myocardial infarction, rheumatic heart disease, abnormal heart rhythm and conduction, diabetes. The disease usually develops at night without loss of consciousness. Ischemic stroke most often develops due to narrowing or blockage of the arteries that feed the brain.

Then the blood flow to some areas in our brain is cut off. If this happens some of the brain cells die which causes to some abilities controlled by that specific brain area (such as f.e. memory and muscle control) are lost.

Cerebral hemorrhage – the most common type of hemorrhagic stroke, most often occurs between the ages of 45-60 years. Medical history of such patients usually includes hypertension, cerebral arteriosclerosis, or a combination of these diseases. Usually a stroke develops suddenly, during the day, against a background of emotional or physical stress.

The cause of cerebral hemorrhage is most often hypertension (about 85% of cases). Less often hemorrhages are caused by atherosclerosis, blood diseases, inflammatory changes of brain vessels, intoxication, vitamin deficiency, and other causes.

Subarachnoid hemorrhage is also a type of hemorrhagic stroke.

The most commonly subarachnoid hemorrhage occurs between the ages of 30-60 years. Among the risk factors for subarachnoid hemorrhage: overweight, smoking, alcoholism, and even single-time alcohol overdose. It may also occur spontaneously, usually due to arterial aneurysm rupture (up to 85% cases) or as a result of traumatic brain injury.

In today's world stroke is one of the most common diseases, with practically no age limits. Enough to say that in such a small country like Israel about 15 thousand people suffer from a stroke yearly. And, unfortunately, among them more and more young able-bodied people. Many stroke victims become disabled. However, as the experience of the Israeli specialists shows - such consequences in many cases can be avoided in case a professional rehabilitation starts on time.

Reuth rehabilitation center receives patients after all kinds of stroke from all over the globe.

Modern medicine has not yet reached a level to be able to replace the damaged part of the brain. However, the currently existing recovery methods used in Reuth rehabilitation center, are effective enough. Proper usage in many cases allows the stroke victims to return to normal life, and even to their work place.

There are several basic principles that Israeli rehabilitation stays for. The most important aspect in rehabilitation after a stroke is the earliest possible start of the rehabilitation process. Recovery procedures shall be started immediately after the stabilization of the patient’s basic life functions.

The standard practice in Israel – within two-three weeks after stroke, the patient is transferred from the neurological to the rehabilitation department or institution (standalone rehab center). If an Israeli citizen had a stroke abroad, he is immediately transported to Israeli hospital via air ambulance, making sure of course, that his condition is stable.

Each patient has his own rehabilitation team which is guided by his treating physician with specialization in rehabilitation and includes: physiotherapy, occupation therapy, speech therapy; rehab psychologist, nutritionist; rehabilitation nurse, carrying out professional patient care. Various problems that arise after a stroke (physical, verbal, behavioral) are solved with the help of specialized rehabilitation procedures, consisting neurological rehabilitation.

The rehabilitation process in Reuth starts with learning the patient's condition including his post-stroke functional limitations. Each participant of the rehabilitation team studies the patient from his perspective and prepares for the patient an individual rehab program, depending on the patient's diagnosis and the set goals. In order to achieve maximal results, the specialists choose the most effective methods and techniques from a wide range of available ones. Within 1-1.5 weeks the team shall meet again. They discuss the changes in the patient's condition, and the treating physician approves the final individual recovery program.

The rehabilitation program includes the following components:

  • Physiotherapy to strengthen muscles, train coordination and balance, restore range of motion; various high-technologies are used;
  • Occupational therapy procedures to restore basic ADL skills, memory, logic, etc., as well as to restore fine motor skills;
  • Speech therapy to improve the process of swallowing and speech recovery functions at all levels;
  • Consultation of rehabilitation psychologist, helping the patient to understand and accept his state, assess their capabilities, to help find a new life orientation;
  • Making a proper diet in accordance with the patient's health state and the restrictions appeared as a result of the disease.
  • Alternative medicine, music therapy, art therapy, therapeutic gardening for the recovery of the centers of the cerebral cortex.
  • Meeting patient's family with the medical staff, teaching them to treat the patient at home.

Successful recovery after stroke is based on the vast experience of the Israeli rehabilitation specialists, coupled with the modern high-technologies and devices. This is confirmed by statistics, as well as numerous success stories of rehabilitation patients.

Success stories

A 67 year old man, active senior, planned a great trip abroad. Suffered a severe stroke. The man was chained to a wheelchair, almost without any hope to restore functional ability.

A long rehabilitation process at Reuth rehabilitation center returned to the patient the walking ability using a stick in house, and outside under the supervision of relatives. He was able to carry out his plans to travel overseas with his wife. Later he wrote a book about his rehabilitation, with particular emphasis on how he managed to kill the pain, believe again in himself and not to give up.

. . .

A 39-year-old woman after a severe hemorrhoidal stroke suffered from pusher syndrome and neglect syndrome; could not even sit in a wheelchair, slipped down.

Rehabilitation process took six months. Strong work on sensitive issues of body position in space, the activation of the proximal muscles of the trunk allowed to bring balance to the functional level. After individually matched orthosis she began to walk with a stick. Active participation in the rehabilitation process of her husband was of a great help.

. . .

After suffering a left-side stroke a famous Israeli impresario lost the ability to move and had a heavy pain in his left hand.

After a long process of intensive rehabilitation, he was able to return to his professional activities. That was his main goal he achieved, though remained in a wheelchair.

It is important to understand that all patients partially or fully recovered during their rehabilitation process, need a supporting rehabilitation therapy that will help him to maintain the achieved state and move to the next step in improving the quality of his life. With specialists’ help the patient has to find interesting workout with a suitable exercising; the load can gradually increase, depending on the person’s condition. Many patients are advised to continue rehabilitation with the help of video-therapy that can be also performed at home. Re-step technology is recommended to improve the function of balance.

However, it is important to remember that after all the major success of recovery after stroke guarantee is the earliest possible start of the rehabilitation process.