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aim was to evaluate the effects of poststroke depression and
antidepressant therapy on the improvement of motor scores and
disability, to verify if the negative effects of poststroke depression
on functional recovery could be counterbalanced by taking
RESULTS OBTAINED BEFORE, DURING, AND AFTER REHABILITATION—on the Barthel index, Canadian neurological scale, and Rivermead mobility index—by 49 depressed patients with stroke, who had been treated (n=25) or not treated (n=24) according to the different therapeutic approaches of their physicians, were compared with results similarly obtained by 15 non-depressed patients with stroke. Analysis was by multivariate analysis of variance for repeated measures
There was a non-significant difference between the groups in their motor and functional scores, and a significant improvement on time. A significant interaction between group and time was seen. This interaction was particularly significant on the Rivermead mobility index, and was due to the fact that the recovery of non-treated depressed patients with stroke was less than the non-depressed and the depressed but treated patients with stroke. Furthermore, recovery from depression was significantly greater in treated than in non-treated depressed patients with stroke.
In conclusion, poststroke depression has negative effects on functional recovery, and a pharmacological treatment of depression can counterbalance this effect.