Lokomat training in vascular dementia: motor improvement and beyond!

Abstract

Vascular dementia (VaD) is a general term describing problems with reasoning, planning, judgment, memory, and other thought processes caused by brain damage from impaired blood flow to the brain. Cognitive rehabilitation and physical therapy are the mainstays of dementia treatment, although often ineffective because of the scarce collaboration of the patients. However, emerging data suggest that physical activity may reduce the risk of cognitive impairment, mainly VaD, in older people living independently. Herein, we describe a 72-year-old male affected by VaD, in which traditional cognitive training in addition to intensive gait robotic rehabilitation (by using Lokomat device) led to a significant improvement in the motor and cognitive function. This promising finding may be related either to the intensive and repetitive aerobic exercises or to the task-oriented training with computerized visual feedback, which can be considered as a relevant tool to increase patients’ motor output, involvement, and motivation during robotic training.

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Conflict of interest

The authors state neither a conflict of interest nor any financial support.

Human and Animal Rights

All procedure followed were in accordance with the ethical standards of the responsible committee on human experimentation, and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1976, as revised in 2008.

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Informed consent was obtained from the patient.

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Correspondence to Rocco Salvatore Calabrò.

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Calabrò, R.S., De Luca, R., Leo, A. et al. Lokomat training in vascular dementia: motor improvement and beyond!. Aging Clin Exp Res 27, 935–937 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40520-015-0343-2

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Keywords

  • Robotic-assisted rehabilitation
  • Lokomat
  • Functional recovery
  • VaD