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Unilateral Neglect

What is Unilateral Neglect?

It is an attention disorder that occurs as a result of injury to the cerebral cortex. It is common in right hemispheric stroke.

Can physiotherapy help people with unilateral neglect?

Yes. Physiotherapists use various interventions like visual scanning/exploration training, neck muscle vibration, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), optokinetic stimulation (OKS), cold water (caloric) vestibular stimulation (CVS), galvanic-vestibular stimulation (GVS), prism adaptation, limb activation training, mental imagery training, sustained attention training, eye patching, virtual reality training, trunk rotation training, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), mirror therapy, and feedback training to address motor, sensory and attention deficits in people with unilateral neglect.

What are the causes of unilateral neglect?

  • Stroke

  • Traumatic brain injuries

  • Neoplastic disease

What are the symptoms of unilateral neglect?

  • Behaving as if the affected side does not exist

  • Failing to respond to stimuli on that affected side

  • Lack of awareness on one side of the body (affected side)

  • Failing to dress, shave or groom in the affected side

  • Eating only on one side of the plate

  • Bumping into things on the affected side

  • Shifting gaze and posture to just one side of the body

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