University of Lynchburg DMSc Doctoral Project Assignment Repository

University of Lynchburg DMSc Doctoral Project Assignment Repository




Elyse Watkins


This article will review methods promoting neuroplasticity-inducing therapies after an acute ischemic stroke where the patient suffers brain tissue damage. The optimal time frame for the initiation of therapy will also be discussed. After a stroke, there is brain tissue damage which can result in varying degrees of deficits ranging from visual disturbances, speech alterations, or motor function loss. Due to tissue damage, there are cellular and electrophysiological modifications affecting cells and entire neural network connections with naturally occurring plasticity for a specific time. Therapy that stimulates the brain to enhance motor recovery can have a maximal effect during the period of physiological neural plasticity, a time when neural networks are increasingly fluid and able to form new connections. This can lead to greater motor function recovery. Learning more about the optimal time frame for therapy to promote enhanced neuronal connectivity after an ischemic injury can ensure stroke patients receive the best possible outcomes with maximal attainable recovery. Recent research has shown that the time of initiation of therapy is significant in obtaining maximal recovery.


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