physical medicine and rehabilitation

Driving Brain Recovery and Enhanced Community Walking with Dual-Task Training After Stroke

Over 400,000 Canadians live with long-term disability from stroke. Stroke survivors say regaining walking ability is a top priority; but, poor cognition, or thinking abilities, can limit walking in the community. How much walking recovery someone achieves likely stems from the brain's ability to dual-task (DT), like walking while talking. In fact, almost 80% of stroke survivors struggle with some aspect of cognition limiting full walking recovery after stroke.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2019

The DCD Advocacy Toolkit: Supporting diagnosis and intervention for children with developmental coordination disorder in British Columbia

Co-leads:

  • Jill Zwicker
    University of British Columbia
  • Ivonne Montgomery
    Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children
  • Giovana Boniface Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists - BC

Trainee:

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2017

ACCEss-SCI: Adapting community centres to enhance exercise in spinal cord injury

Co-leads:

  • Tania Lam
    University of British Columbia
  • Ross MacDonald
    City of Surrey
  • Jaine Priest 
    City of Vancouver

Trainee:

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2018

Cerebrovascular burden and cognitive impairment after spinal cord injury

Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a complex pathophysiology, characterized not only by paralysis but also severe autonomic cardiovascular dysfunction. After SCI, strokes are 300 - 400% more likely to occur compared to non-disabled individuals.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2018

Investigating the role of skeletal muscle dysfunction on dyspnea and exercise intolerance in interstitial lung disease

Interstitial lung disease (ILD) is a group of disorders characterized by fibrosis and inflammation of the lungs. Dyspnea (i.e., breathlessness) is the most common symptom in ILD. To minimize dyspnea, ILD patients commonly avoid physical activity, leading to a progressive decline in exercise capacity, and eventually the inability to perform daily activities. Maintaining exercise capacity is important, given that ILD patients with the lowest physical activity levels have the lowest quality of life and the highest mortality.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2018

An advanced wearable robotic exoskeleton for assisting people with lower limb disabilities

Human locomotion is influenced by many factors, including neuromuscular and joint disorders that affect the functionality of joints and can cause partial or complete paralysis. Reduced mobility is estimated to affect over 1.5 million people in the United States alone. Many individuals require mobility assistive technologies to keep up with their daily life, and the demand for these devices increases with age.

Primary Investigator: 
Year: 
2018

AAPLE-Walk: A novel gait-mimicking exercise machine for cardiovascular fitness and rehabilitation

Heart disease and diabetes are just two of many conditions that can occur in people after a spinal cord injury (SCI). Exercise can play a significant role in mitigating the risks associated with these conditions, but typical exercise options for people with SCI or other lower limb disabilities are usually limited to seated upper body exercise (for example, wheeling or hand cycling).

Primary Investigator: 
Year: 
2018

Influence of community rehabilitation services on community reintegration and health utilization after stroke

Stroke is a leading cause of long-term disability in adults, and community reintegration is the pivotal outcome of successful rehabilitation.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2015

Using aerobic exercise to enhance motor learning and cortical excitability after stroke

The severity of motor impairments due to stroke vary markedly in different people, and with therapy, a degree of recovery is possible. Understanding the underlying neural mechanisms supporting motor recovery from stroke would inform development of more effective therapies.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2015

Characterizing Arm Recovery in People with Severe Stroke (CARPSS)

In Canada, there are over 50,000 new strokes reported every year. The prevalence and severity of subsequent upper limb disability is increasing and the prospect of complete recovery is poor. Stroke survivors who lack early indicators of a good prognosis, such as movement at the shoulder or wrist, are considered unlikely to regain much arm function through rehabilitation.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2015

How is the motor learning capacity of a skilled walking task affected after an incomplete spinal cord injury?

Many people who have an incomplete spinal cord injury (iSCI) have the potential to improve their ability to walk. Current training strategies are limited in their ability to target skilled walking tasks (e.g. stairs and obstacles).

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2015

Frailty in interstitial lung disease

Interstitial lung disease (ILD) encompasses a large number of entities that cause inflammation and/or fibrosis of the lungs. An estimated 10,000 Canadians have idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and an additional 30-40,000 have other common forms of fibrotic ILD. Fibrotic ILD reduces quality of life, is often disabling, and increases healthcare costs. The susceptibility to ILD, severity of its manifestations, frequency of adverse treatment effects, and risk of comorbidities all increase with age. Frailty is a major health problem and will be even more important with an aging population.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2014

Cardiac responses to spinal cord injury and exercise

The prognosis for the 2.5 million North Americans living with spinal cord injury (SCI) is poor. These wheelchair bound individuals are subjected to a number of physical, social, and environmental barriers that compound paralysis and limit daily physical activity. The five-fold increase in risk for heart disease reduces life-expectancy and costs the North American healthcare system $3 billion per annum.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2014

Mechanisms of dyspnea and exercise intolerance in patients with chronic respiratory diseases

Chronic respiratory diseases are a leading cause of death and disability in British Columbia and around the world. Patients with respiratory diseases commonly experience shortness of breath which makes it difficult, if not impossible, to perform simple activities of daily living such as walking up a flight of stairs. To avoid this uncomfortable sensation, patients adjust by minimizing physical activity which makes them weaker and ultimately leads to even more shortness of breath.

Primary Investigator: 
Award Type: 
Year: 
2014
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