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Clinical Trial Summary

This study is a necessary and important step in the development of a new therapy for upper limb functional recovery in patients with severe motor impairment. It is the first clinical trial of non-invasive brain stimulation (repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation or rTMS) delivered to excite the undamaged hemisphere (specifically the contralesional higher motor cortices or cHMC) in stroke. Therefore, this study will determine whether the positive results obtained in our short-term pilot study can be made to last longer and produce functional benefits in severe patients with the application of brain stimulation in combination with long-term rehabilitation therapy. Rehabilitation therapy administered is called contralaterally controlled functional electrical stimulation (CCFES). Determining whether combining rTMS facilitating the cHMC with CCFES produces synergistic gains in functional abilities in severe patients is necessary for acceptance by the clinical community and to move this technology toward commercialization and widespread dissemination. The proposed study will determine whether the combination of rTMS facilitating the cHMC with CCFES produces greater improvements in upper extremity function in severe participants who are ≥6 months from stroke onset than the combination of rTMS facilitating the damaged hemisphere (specifically the ipsilesional primary motor cortex, iM1) and CCFES or the combination of sham rTMS and CCFES. The secondary purposes are to define which patients benefit most from the treatments, which may inform future device and treatment development and clinical translation, and to explore what distinct effects the three treatments have on the brain. To accomplish these purposes, we are conducting a clinical trial that enrolls severe stroke patients.

Clinical Trial Description

Overall Study Design Summary: We propose a 5-yr RCT in which 72 stroke patients who are >6 months post-stroke are randomized to 12 wks of one of 3 treatments: (1) CCFES + cHMC facilitation, (2) CCFES + iM1 facilitation, (3) CCFES + Sham rTMS. The treatment dose will be the same for all groups: 10 sessions per week (7.5 hrs) of self-administered CCFES-assisted hand opening exercises performed at home plus 2 sessions per week (2.5 hrs) consisting of group-specific rTMS and CCFES-mediated functional task practice performed in the laboratory. Upper limb impairment, activity limitation, and patient-reported disability will be assessed at 0 (baseline), 6, 12 (end of treatment), 24, and 36 wks. Neurophysiology (IHI and excitability of uncrossed output) will be assessed at 0 (baseline), 12 (end of treatment), and 36 wks, on a separate day from functional motor outcomes assessment. MRI assessment of stroke lesion and location, and DTI assessment of corticospinal damage will be performed at baseline. ;

Study Design

Related Conditions & MeSH terms

NCT number NCT03870672
Study type Interventional
Source The Cleveland Clinic
Contact Kyle J. O'Laughlin, MS
Phone 216-445-6728
Status Not yet recruiting
Phase N/A
Start date April 1, 2019
Completion date July 1, 2019

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