Emerging concerns of older stroke patients about assistive device use

Laura N. Gitlin, Mark R. Luborsky, Ruth L. Schemm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Assistive devices minimize limitations from physical impairment and are integral to rehabilitation. Little is known about older patients' concerns, perceptions, and beliefs about assistive devices. This study used a structured, qualitative approach to describe device perceptions of 103 stroke patients in rehabilitation. Six dimensions of patient concerns were identified, including the operation and utility of devices, social contexts and consequences, and attributions of cultural meanings of use. Initial device use posed cultural value dilemmas originating in discrepancies between sociocultural beliefs and conflicting normative expectations. Knowledge of these dimensions suggests new areas for social science research and refinements to clinical practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)169-180
Number of pages12
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Disability
  • Patient views
  • Rehabilitation
  • Self-care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gerontology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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