Research Topic

Performance and Participation Outcomes for Individuals with Neurological Conditions

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Patients suffering from neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, stroke, brain injury and more, encounter and endure numerous situations in their daily lives that cause excess disability. Because of the variable course of their diseases and the variety of demands of the activities that people need ...

Patients suffering from neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, stroke, brain injury and more, encounter and endure numerous situations in their daily lives that cause excess disability. Because of the variable course of their diseases and the variety of demands of the activities that people need and want to do, their individual disease course can often not be anticipated and there remains relative uncertainty about how and when they will experience incapacity.

Neuroscience and rehabilitation science constitute complementary disciplines engaged in the exploration of the human Central Nervous System (CNS) and amelioration of functional disability. There exists, however, a disconnect between disciplines, which precludes opportunities for meaningful exchange and synergic collaboration to improve people’s lives.

The International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) constitutes a model for classifying and defining health and health-related domains. This model incorporates 3 main domains: body function and structure; human activity, and participation. Health practitioners typically focus efforts on diagnostic symptomatology – attending predominantly to body function and structure.

As a consequence of this focus on body structures and functions, the remaining key domains of activity performance and participation are typically overlooked. Performance refers to the conduct of meaningful activities, tasks, and/or roles via complex interactions between a person and his/her environment. Participation refers to full engagement in what people need and want to do. Both performance and participation are central concepts in rehabilitation. By addressing performance and participation in science and practice, rehabilitation professionals and scientists provide key linkages among biomedical science, healthcare, and population health.

Fair progress has been achieved by health scientists engaged in extensive research on the impact of neurological conditions on performance. It is essential, however, to adopt a more comprehensive perspective, which effectively addresses both the neglected key domains, as well as incorporating a range of components intricately involved in human performance, such as motor, sensory, cognitive and emotional components. This broadened perspective may significantly enhance the functional outcomes for persons suffering from any of the range of neurological conditions.

In this Research Topic we will address several of these points with Original Research Articles, Review articles, and Meta-Analyses covering topics ranging from basic research to translational studies to clinical studies.


Keywords: Central Nervous System Deficits, Cognition, Communication, Motor Deficits, Sensorimotor, Neurorehabilitation, Neurorecovery, Neuroplasticity, Neurotechnology


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