Delivering intensive rehabilitation in stroke: Factors influencing implementation

L. Connell, T.D. Klassen, J. Janssen, C. Thetford, J.J. Eng

Publikation: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftArtikelBegutachtung


Background. The evidence base for stroke rehabilitation recommends intensive and repetitive task-specific practice, as well as aerobic exercise. However, translating these evidence- based interventions from research into clinical practice remains a major challenge. Objective. The objective of this study was to investigate factors influencing implementation of higher-intensity activity in stroke rehabilitation settings. Design. This qualitative study used a cross-sectional design. Methods. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with rehabilitation therapists from 4 sites across 2 Canadian provinces who had experience in delivering a higher-intensity intervention as part of a clinical trial (Determining Optimal post-Stroke Exercise [DOSE]). An interview guide was developed, and data were analyzed using implementation frameworks. Results. Fifteen therapists were interviewed before data saturation was reached. Therapists and patients generally had positive experiences regarding high-intensity interventions. However, therapists felt they would adapt the protocol to accommodate their beliefs about ensuring movement quality. The requirement for all patients to have a graded exercise test and the use of sensors (eg, heart rate monitors) gave therapists confidence to push patients harder than they normally would. Paradoxically, a system that enables routine graded exercise testing and the availability of staff and equipment contribute challenges for implementation in everyday practice. Conclusions. Even therapists involved in delivering a high-intensity intervention as part of a trial wanted to adapt it for clinical practice; therefore, it is imperative that researchers are explicit regarding key intervention components and what can be adapted to help ensure implementation fidelity. Changes in therapists' beliefs and system-level changes (staffing and resources) are likely necessary to facilitate higher-intensity rehabilitation in practice. © 2018 American Physical Therapy Association.
Seiten (von - bis)243-250
FachzeitschriftPhysical Therapy
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 1 Apr. 2018
Extern publiziertJa


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