Brain-mapping techniques for evaluating poststroke recovery and rehabilitation: A review

James C. Eliassen, Erin L. Boespflug, Martine Lamy, Jane Allendorfer, Wen Jang Chu, Jerzy P. Szaflarski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


Brain-mapping techniques have proven to be vital in understanding the molecular, cellular, and functional mechanisms of recovery after stroke. This article briefly summarizes the current molecular and functional concepts of stroke recovery and addresses how various neuroimaging techniques can be used to observe these changes. The authors provide an overview of various techniques including diffusion-tensor imaging (DTI), magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS), ligand-based positron emission tomography (PET), single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) and regional metabolic rate of glucose (rCMRglc) PET and SPECT, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS), electroencephalography (EEC), magnetoencephalography (MEC), and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). Discussion in the context of poststroke recovery research informs about the applications and limitations of the techniques in the area of rehabilitation research. The authors also provide suggestions on using these techniques in tandem to more thoroughly address the outstanding questions in the field.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)427-450
Number of pages24
JournalTopics in Stroke Rehabilitation
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • DTI
  • EEG
  • MEG
  • NIRS
  • PET
  • Poststroke recovery
  • Rehabilitation
  • Stroke
  • TMS
  • fMRI

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Community and Home Care
  • Clinical Neurology


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