Even a year after surviving a severe stroke, intense physical therapy helps patients recover a surprising amount of arm function. Recent study: 39 patients (a year or more post-stroke) who did physical therapy involving exercises, electrical stimulation and/or a robotic device five hours a day, five days a week for 12 weeks doubled or nearly doubled their ability to do everyday activities, such as placing the affected arm into a sweater sleeve.

Janis Daly, PhD, professor of neurology, University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville.