Research Article  |   March 2014
Single-Case Design Evaluation of Compression Therapy for Edema of the Stroke-Affected Hand
Author Affiliations
  • Louise Gustafsson, PhD, BOccThy(Hons), is Head of Occupational Therapy, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, The University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Queensland 4072, Australia; l.gustafsson@uq.edu.au
  • Alexandra Walter, BOccThy(Hons), was Undergraduate Honors Student, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, The University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Queensland, Australia, at the time of the study
  • Kylie Bower, BOccThy(Hons), is Senior Occupational Therapist, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Metro South Health and Hospitals District, Woolloongabba, Queensland, Australia
  • Adrienne Slaughter, BOccThy, is Occupational Therapist, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Metro South Health and Hospitals District, Woolloongabba, Queensland, Australia
  • Melanie Hoyle, MOccThySt, PostGradDipPsych, GradDipHlthSc, is Associate Lecturer, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, The University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Queensland, Australia
Article Information
Hand and Upper Extremity / Neurologic Conditions / Stroke / Rehabilitation, Disability, and Participation
Research Article   |   March 2014
Single-Case Design Evaluation of Compression Therapy for Edema of the Stroke-Affected Hand
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, March/April 2014, Vol. 68, 203-211. doi:10.5014/ajot.2014.009423
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, March/April 2014, Vol. 68, 203-211. doi:10.5014/ajot.2014.009423
Abstract

OBJECTIVE. To explore the efficacy of low- and high-stretch compression bandaging for edema management in the stroke-affected upper limb.

METHOD. A single-case, ABA-design study was conducted with 8 participants alternately allocated to receive low- or high-stretch bandaging. Edema was measured with circumferential tape at four specified points from the hand to the mid-forearm. All measurements were represented graphically for visual analysis, and celeration lines were calculated to indicate the degree of slope in each phase.

RESULTS. Visual analysis indicated fluctuating edema volume in the first baseline phase, decreasing edema volume in the intervention phase, and increasing edema volume in the second baseline phase. The results did not clearly distinguish between the two bandaging groups.

CONCLUSION. Compression bandaging may have benefits in the management of edema after stroke. Further research is required to identify factors contributing to the long-term maintenance of reductions gained after compression bandaging.