Robot-assisted therapy and botulinum toxin for upper limb ataxia: A case report

S. Straudi, G. Berto, M. G. Benedetti, C. Foti, L. Lutzoni, N. Basaglia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Upper limb ataxia is one of the most common motor disorders associated with cerebellar damage and it might lead to motor impairment and disability. OBJECTIVE: In this study, a subject with disabling upper limb ataxia and intention tremor underwent a six weeks intervention of robot-assisted training combined with Botulinum Toxin Type A (BTX-A). METHODS: Robot-assisted therapy which includes repetitive, goal-directed reaching movements was administered after upper-limb BTX-A injections. Improvements in arm coordination and motor performance were assessed throughout a kinematic analysis and an activity daily living-based questionnaire. RESULTS: After this six weeks training program all spatio-temporal parameters were improved with no additional functional gains. CONCLUSIONS: The positive effects on motor coordination in our subject might help to design clinical trials that combine BTX-A injections and robot-assisted therapy in order to improve upper-limb coordination in subjects with ataxia. Furthermore, if exercises focused on ADLs will be included, they might help to regain a functional use of the arm.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-26
Number of pages4
JournalTechnology and Disability
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • ataxia
  • botulinum toxin
  • Rehabilitation
  • robot-assisted therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Health Informatics


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