Free
Research Article  |   July 2001
Unilateral Spatial Neglect: New Treatment Approaches With Potential Application to Occupational Therapy
Author Affiliations
  • Esmelda Freeman, MS, OTR/L, is Private Practitioner, Cape Town, South Africa. (Mailing address: 26 Peak Drive, Pinelands, 7405, South Africa)
Article Information
Neurologic Conditions / Stroke / Physical Abilities
Research Article   |   July 2001
Unilateral Spatial Neglect: New Treatment Approaches With Potential Application to Occupational Therapy
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, July/August 2001, Vol. 55, 401-408. doi:10.5014/ajot.55.4.401
American Journal of Occupational Therapy, July/August 2001, Vol. 55, 401-408. doi:10.5014/ajot.55.4.401
Abstract

Unilateral spatial neglect is one of the most common symptoms of stroke. It has important implications for occupational therapy because of its clinical manifestations, which include problems with activities of daily living, mobility, and reading. This article reviews neurophysiological theories pertaining to unilateral spatial neglect and focuses on two new treatment approaches with potential application to occupational therapy practice. Both approaches—constraint-induced therapy and partial visual occlusion— involve a form of restraint of the less affected side. These approaches are discussed in the context of current neurophysiological theories and the application to occupational therapy treatment for neglect.