Document Type

Critically Appraised Topic

Publication Date

2011

Clinical Scenario

Engagement in meaningful occupations is an important focus of occupational therapy intervention. Clients often are unable to engage in their chosen occupations as a result of injury or illness, especially in the instance of a dramatic change in cognitive or motor abilities following a cerebrovascular accident, which can lead to an increase in psychological health concerns. Occupational therapy clinicians have a responsibility to understand the connection between meaningful occupations and psychological health when planning and executing intervention with stroke survivors.

Clinical Question

How does occupational engagement affect depression in stroke survivors?

Clinical Bottom Line

There is sufficient evidence to suggest that depression rates in stroke survivors change, depending on the stroke survivors’ levels of engagement and participation in activities. However, there is a limited amount of research that directly link levels of depression and occupational engagement. As an important contributor to the post-CVA health care team, occupational therapists should continue to use a variety of activities in clinical intervention to target activities that are both therapeutic and meaningful to each unique stroke survivor’s occupational profile.

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