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What is Hemiplegia?

Hemiplegia is characterised by muscle weakness, spasticity (increased muscle tone) and sensory loss, in the arm, leg and trunk on one side of the body. Hemiplegia is often a symptom of a neurological condition caused by damage to the brain or spinal cord such as: Hemiplegia affects everyone differently but can have a significant impact on independence with everyday activities such as washing, dressing, eating and walking.

Neurological physiotherapist using passive stretches and mobilisations of the hip, knee and ankle to relieve stiffnessAbove: Neurological physiotherapist using passive stretches and mobilisations of the hip, knee and ankle to relieve stiffness

Physiotherapy for Hemiplegia

Physiotherapy will promote normal movement and improve function on the affected side of the body which will increase independence with daily tasks. Physiotherapy at for hemiplegia may involve:
  • Repetitive practice of functional tasks with the affected arm to stimulate motor pathways and improve upper limb function.
  • Active and passive range of movement exercises to strengthen muscles in the arm leg and trunk and relieve pain and stiffness.
  • Weight bearing exercises with the affected upper limb
  • Gait retraining with or without the use of aids
  • Practicing transfers such as getting in and out of bed, on and off toilet, up and down stairs to promote independence
  • Exercises to improve core stability and balance
  • Advice on orthotic devices
  • Advice on the Saebo flex to maximise support of the hand and the Saebo stretch to increase range of movement, which will enhance ability with dressing, eating or washing.
An initial assessment with one of our specialised physiotherapists at will identify your main problems and develop a structured rehabilitation program suited to you. This will ensure that you reach your maximum potential and improve your independence with functional activities important to you.

For more information on how physiotherapy can help you, or to book an appointment please call 0330 088 7800.

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