Magnifying vision improves motor performance in individuals with stroke

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Increasing perceived hand size using magnifying lenses improves tactile discrimination and motor performance in neurologically-intact individuals. We tested whether magnification of the hand can improve motor function in individuals with chronic stroke. Twenty-five individuals with a history of stroke more than 6 months prior to testing underwent a series of tasks exploring different aspects of motor performance (grip force, finger tapping, reaching and grasping, and finger matching) under two visual conditions: magnified or normal vision. Performance was also assessed shortly after visual manipulation to test if these effects persisted. Twenty-eight percent of individuals showed an immediate significant improvement averaged across all tasks with magnification; similar beneficial responses were also observed in 32% of individuals after a short delay. These results suggest that magnification of the image of the hand may be of utility in rehabilitation of individuals with stroke.HighlightsMagnification of vision improves movements' execution in individuals with stroke.Magnification of vision may be of utility in rehabilitation.Magnification of the effector influences motor performance.

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