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Fugl-Meyer of Sensorimotor Recovery

 two hands (no cast)

What is the Fugl-Meyer Assessment of Sensorimotor Recovery?

The FMA is a stroke-specific, performance-based impairment index. It is designed to assess motor functioning, balance, sensation and joint functioning in patients with post-stroke hemiplegia. It is applied clinically and in research to determine disease severity, describe motor recovery, and to plan and assess treatment.

The scale is comprised of five domains and there are 155 items in total:

  • Motor functioning (in the upper and lower extremities)
  • Sensory functioning (evaluates light touch on two surfaces of the arm and leg, and position sense for 8 joints)
  • Balance (contains 7 tests, 3 seated and 4 standing)
  • Joint range of motion (8 joints)
  • Joint pain
 two hands (no cast)

How is the Fugl-Meyer Assessment of Sensorimotor Recovery completed?

Scoring is based on direct observation of performance. Scale items are scored on the basis of ability to complete the item using a 3-point ordinal scale where 0=cannot perform, 1=performs partially and 2=performs fully. The total possible scale score is 226.

Points are divided among the domains as follows:

  • Motor score: ranges from 0 (hemiplegia) to 100 points (normal motor performance). Divided into 66 points for upper extremity and 34 points for the lower extremity.
  • Sensation: ranges from 0 to 24 points. Divided into 8 points for light touch and 16 points for position sense.
  • Balance: ranges from 0 to 14 points. Divided into 6 points for sitting and 8 points for standing.
  • Joint range of motion: ranges from 0 to 44 points.
  • Joint pain: ranges from 0 to 44 points.

Classifications for impairment severity have been proposed based on FMA Total motor scores (out of 100 points):

Fugl-Meyer (1980)

Fugl-Meyer et al. (1975)

Duncan, Goldstein, Horner,
Landsman, Samsa, & Matchar (1994)

< 50 = Severe


0-35 = Very Severe

50-84 = Marked

> 84 = Hemiplegia

36-55 = Severe

85-94 = Moderate

85-95 = Hemiparesis

56-79 = Moderate

95-99 = Slight

96-99 = Slight motor

> 79 = Mild

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What length of programme is best?

Our therapists will recommend programme length based on their assessment findings. Generally the less functional movement to start with, the longer the programme recommendation. We offer a minimum programme length of 2 weeks – the evidence does not support any less!

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