Evelina Rimkutė, Brigita Kreivinienė, Daiva Mockevičienė, Eglė Radzevičienė, Žilvinas Kleiva, Sonata Mačiulskytė


The aim of this research was to assess the effect of dolphin assisted specialized aquatic program applied in rehabilitation of psychomotor functions of persons after hemorrhagic stroke. The research was carried out in 2018 in Lithuania. Two persons with diagnosed hemorrhagic stroke have been surveyed. In the course of the investigation, the effect of aquatic dolphin assisted physical activities on coordination of arms, legs without using balance was assessed; static and dynamic change of dynamics, the effect on gait in water with dolphins were assessed. Additionally, the data on life quality aspects obtained by the SF-36 questionnaire was investigated. It is observed that after application of aquatic dolphin assisted therapeutic activities improvement of both static and dynamic balance has been recorded; three weeks later, most indicators remained the same. The conducted research revealed that therapy had a highly beneficial effect on persons with neurological diseases in terms of assessment of their dynamic balance, gait and gait speed (motor skills) as well as quality of life. Significant changes of motor skills in water in both surveyed individuals have been recorded. Therapeutic aquatic dolphin assisted activities are an effective method to improve the parameters of balance, gait and quality of life in patients; however, psycho-emotional and psycho-social factors, such as support of the social network supplementing continuing therapeutic activities, are a highly significant factor in ensuring further improvement of patient’s condition.

Keyword(s): hemorrhagic stroke, balance, gait, quality of life, dolphin assisted therapy.
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