Importance: Insufficient voluntary forearm movements are associated with ineffective and inefficient functional performance among people poststroke. Although evidence supports the application of the occupational therapy task-oriented (OTTO) approach for this population, the training protocol does not explicitly address the role of forearm rotation movements. In addition, a need exists for theoretical support for orthotic interventions for people poststroke. 

Objective: To examine the efficacy of (1) a forearm rotation orthosis, (2) the OTTO approach, and (3) the combination of the two with people poststroke with a hemiparetic arm.

Design: Stratified, randomized, two-group, single-blinded, repeated-measures design.

Setting: Rehabilitation clinic.

Participants: Participants (N = 14) with a diagnosis of stroke and at least 10° of voluntary shoulder and elbow movement.

Intervention: Participants were stratified into three groups by motor function (mild, moderate, severe) and randomly assigned either to 6 wk of no treatment followed by 6 wk of OTTO or to 6 wk of orthotic intervention followed by 6 wk of orthosis plus OTTO.

Outcomes and Measures: Primary outcome measures were the Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM), Wolf Motor Function Test (WMFT), and Motor Activity Log (MAL), administered at baseline (Week 1), at the end of Phase 1 (Week 7), and at the end of Phase 2 (Week 15) by blinded evaluators.

Results: Both groups showed clinically important improvements on the COPM. No significant differences were found on the WMFT or MAL.

Conclusions and Relevance: The OTTO intervention provides clinically important benefits in self-perceived functional performance to people poststroke.

What This Article Adds: The OTTO approach is an occupation-focused intervention that aims at functional performance and emphasizes clients' active engagement throughout the process. The findings suggest that the protocol of the OTTO intervention and its efficacy are appropriate for clinical practice.

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