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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014, Article ID 545408, 9 pages
Clinical Study

The Effectiveness of Functional Electrical Stimulation Based on a Normal Gait Pattern on Subjects with Early Stroke: A Randomized Controlled Trial

1Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hospital, Sun Yat-sen University, 107 Yanjiang West Road, Guangzhou 510120, China
2Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University, 1 Jianshe East Road, Zhengzhou, China
3Henan Provincial Technology Center of Rehabilitation and Assistive Devices, 13 Jinger Road, Zhengzhou, China

Received 22 February 2014; Revised 10 June 2014; Accepted 16 June 2014; Published 10 July 2014

Academic Editor: Alfonso Fasano

Copyright © 2014 Zhimei Tan et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. To investigate the effectiveness of four-channel FES based on a normal gait pattern on improving functional ability in subjects early after ischemic stroke. Methods. Forty-five subjects were randomly assigned into a four-channel FES group (), a placebo group (), or a dual-channel group (). Stimulation lasted for 30 min in each session with 1 session/day, 5 days a week for 3 weeks. All subjects were assessed at baseline, at 3 weeks of treatment, and at 3 months after the treatment had finished. The assessments included Fugl-Meyer Assessment (FMA), the Postural Assessment Scale for Stroke Patients (PASS), Berg Balance Scale (BBS), Functional Ambulation Category (FAC), and the Modified Barthel Index (MBI). Results. All 3 groups demonstrated significant improvements in all outcome measurements from pre- to posttreatment and further gains at followup. The score of FMA and MBI improved significantly in the four-channel group at the end of the 3 weeks of training. And the scores of PASS, BBS, MBI, and FAC in the four-channel group were significantly higher than those of the placebo group. Conclusions. This study indicated that four-channel FES can improve motor function, balance, walking ability, and performance of activities of daily living in subjects with early ischemic stroke.