District of Columbia
The overall goal of this study is to determine whether robotic-assisted gait training is
better than standard physical therapy treatments for improving walking ability in
hemiparetic stroke patients.
Subjects enrolled into the study will be randomly assigned to one of 2 groups. The first
group will receive one hour of conventional gait training, consisting of lower extremity
strengthening exercises, stretching, and full weight bearing walking as tolerated, with
appropriate physical assistance from a therapist. The second group will receive walking
therapy using a Lokomat, which is a special treadmill that works in conjunction with 2
light-weight robotic arms that assists the subject to move their legs while they try to walk
on the treadmill. Some of the subject’s body-weight will be supported using a harness.
During Lokomat training sessions, subjects will receive feedback of their walking
performance on a computer monitor to help them walk. Both groups will be trained for 8-10
weeks, 3 times per week, for 1 hour training sessions (24 total sessions). Resources for
transportation to the National Rehabilitation Hospital will be provided to all study
- Unilateral brain lesion.
- Within 6 months post-stroke.
- Receiving no other therapy targeting function of lower limb.
- Demonstration of hemiparesis (motor dysfunction in lower limb).
- Able to walk 5 meters without therapist assistance (walking device only).
- Able to follow commands and protocol.
- Significant cognitive or communication impairments.
- Uncontrolled hypertension.
- Uncontrolled diabetes.
- Clinical depression.