Brain Neurorehabil.  2012 Mar;5(1):12-18. 10.12786/bn.2012.5.1.12.

Age Factor in Rehabilitation Outcome

  • 1Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Dankook University College of Medicine, Korea.


In stroke rehabilitation, risk factors, clinical course, and outcome of functional recovery can be different among age groups. In animal model of stroke, aged animals are more severely impaired behaviorally, and the functional recovery is delayed and reduced. Development of the glial scar and apoptosis is accelerated, and the timing of the cellular and genetic response is altered. The functional outcome is usually favorable in young adult patients, but it appears that the outcome of pediatric stroke is unfavorable. In most studies, the clinical symptoms are more severe, and functional recovery is poorer in elderly stroke patients. However, it is not clear whether or not the poor outcome is attributable to the old age per se. It is apparent that co-morbidity and risk factors also signficantly affect the outocme of stroke patients. Elderly stroke patients can achieve functional improvement through the rehabilitation program, if they were not disabled at the onset of stroke, and had few co-morbidities and risk factors. Physiatrists should be aware of those differences and can make a rehabilitatin plan that is appropriate for age of the patient.


age factors; rehabilitation; stroke; treatment outcome
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