Predictors of long-term participation after stroke.

PURPOSE: (1) To explore factors that predict long-term participation after stroke (2-4 years after discharge from rehabilitation), and (2) to determine factors that predict both short- and long-term participation.

METHODS: Biopsychosocial data of people who had had a stroke were measured at discharge from an intensive rehabilitation unit using valid instruments. Six months later (n=102) as well as 2-4 years later (n=66), social participation of the survivors was measured in their living environments. Participation was estimated with the Assessment of Life Habits (LIFE-H), which includes 12 categories of daily activities and social roles.

RESULTS: From multivariate regression analyses, the best predictors of long-term participation after stroke appear to be age, comorbidity, motor coordination, upper extremity ability and affect. Age, comorbidity, affect and lower extremity coordination are the best predictors of participation after stroke at both measurement times.

CONCLUSIONS: With the exception of age, these factors may be positively modified and thus warrant special attention in rehabilitation interventions.