What forms of spasticity are prevalent in stroke survivors?
Spasticity can occur in the upper and lower limbs. The body region and the extent to which it is affected depend on the area of the brain or spinal cord that has been damaged.
- In spastic hemiplegia, the muscles of one side of the body are affected. Generally, injury to the left side of the brain will cause symptoms in the right side of the body, and vice versa. Hemiparesis is weakness on one side of the body. It is less severe than hemiplegia. Thus, the patient can move the impaired side of their body, but with reduced muscular strength.
- In patients with spastic diplegia, most often the lower limbs are affected, called then paraplegia. In that case, it is mainly related to a lesion of the spinal cord. Rarely diplegia concerns the 2 upper limbs.
- All four limbs are affected in patients with spastic quadriplegia. These patients are the least likely to be able to walk. This is mainly related to lesion of the spinal cord.