PREP Plus combined postrehabilitation programme to support upper limb recovery in community-dwelling stroke survivors: protocol for a mixed-methods, cluster-assigned feasibility study

Katy Pedlow, Suzanne McDonough, Natalie Klempel, Jenny Hylands, Noelene Hughes, Zoe Campbell, Janice J Eng, Aoife Stephenson, Niamh Kennedy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Downloads (Pure)


Introduction: Poor recovery of the upper limb following a stroke has been recognised as a significant problem in the UK. Although there is good evidence that early, intense rehabilitation can lead to upper limb recovery, often this is not maintained, with less than 50% of people regaining the ability to use their upper limb for independent function at 6 months. Upper limb recovery potential is reported for many years poststroke, yet current long-term provision is insufficient. Methods and analysis: 60 participants will be recruited into this feasibility study, with 30 allocated to a Post Rehabilitation Enablement Programme (PREP) alone and 30 allocated to a combined programme, PREP Plus, consisting of PREP and the Graded Repetitive Arm Supplementary Programme (GRASP). We will aim to complete four iterative waves. Within each wave, the intervention design will be refined, based on participant feedback. Within each wave, there will be one cluster unit (one intervention group ;PREP Plus) and one control group ;PREP alone)). A total of five PREP sites within Northern Ireland Health and Social Care Trusts will be used for this study. PREP Plus will have a home exercise component along with exercises logs and a behaviour contract. Qualitative and quantitative measures will evaluate the acceptability and feasibility to determine how feasible it is to embed the intervention into practice, as well as to determine the feasibility of a larger, mixed-methods, randomised controlled trial to assess intervention efficacy. Clinical endpoints will also be explored. Ethics and dissemination: This study has been approved by the Health and Social Care Research Ethics Committee A, IRAS project ID (278620). Participants will provide informed consent prior to participating in the study. Information outlining the purpose of the study, what data will be collected and how the data will be managed will be provided. Results will be published in peer-reviewed journals and any published data will be available on the university data repository. The project management group will advise on different avenues for dissemination to ensure it reaches appropriate audiences. Trial registration number: NCT05090163.
Original languageEnglish
Article number069016
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
JournalBMJ Open
Issue number1
Early online date20 Jan 2023
Publication statusPublished online - 20 Jan 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by Scientific Research Committee (SRC) and NICHS Board, grant number 2020_S01.

Publisher Copyright:
© Author(s) (or their employer(s)) 2023. Re-use permitted under CC BY-NC. No commercial re-use. See rights and permissions. Published by BMJ.


  • Rehabilitation medicine
  • 1506
  • 1727
  • Stroke
  • Stroke medicine
  • Stroke Rehabilitation/methods
  • Humans
  • Survivors
  • Independent Living
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Quality of Life
  • Upper Extremity


Dive into the research topics of 'PREP Plus combined postrehabilitation programme to support upper limb recovery in community-dwelling stroke survivors: protocol for a mixed-methods, cluster-assigned feasibility study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this