Date of Award


Document Type

Scholarly Project

Degree Name

Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT)


Occupational Therapy

First Advisor

Jan Stube


Activities of Daily Living; Fatigue -- prevention & control; Stroke -- rehabilitation


Several research studies have determined that fatigue is a common symptom, that should be viewed as an independent consequence following a stroke: it interferes with an individual's engagement in activities of daily living. Fatigue can be misinterpreted as depression, therefore, may be treated inappropriately or remain untreated. Fatigue is not often addressed by health care professionals, therefore, clients and their families are not receiving the proper education and resources to manage fatigue challenges (Glader, Stegmayr, & Aspuland, 2002; Schepers, Visser-Meily, Ketelaar, & Lindeman, 2006). The purpose of this project was to develop a guide for daily living for clients and caregivers to educate and manage post-stroke fatigue.

A literature review of journal articles was conducted to determine what has been done in the healthcare profession and the field of occupational therapy regarding management of post-stroke fatigue. Brief summaries of each of the articles were written to broaden knowledge and synthesize understanding of the topic. Common themes relating to post-stroke fatigue were identified from the scholarly literature and became the focus of discussion throughout the literature review: defining fatigue and how it differs from depression; exploring possible causes and risk factors; studying fatigue's impact on daily living and on caregivers; selecting appropriate measurements and assessments to further future research; and studying current suggested interventions and their effectiveness in managing post-stroke fatigue.

A guide for daily living to manage post-stroke fatigue was developed for clients and caregivers using adult learning principles. Adult Learning principles acknowledge that the learner takes the responsibility to make his or her own decisions. By increasing awareness of what the learner needs to know, individuals are able to make personal modifications and to effectively cope with real-life situations (Knowles et a!., 2005). The contents of the guide address the most prevalent needs, as identified in the literature review, of individuals that are suffering from post-stroke fatigue and can be incorporated at any point within the rehabilitation process.

This guide for daily living focuses on the integral role played by an occupational therapist to assist clients and caregivers and provides educational information to enable management of post-stroke fatigue symptoms. The product facilitates the ability to define and identify post-stroke fatigue; to identify possible causes and risk factors; to recognize the potential impact on daily living; to seek further information from health care providers; and to provide post-stroke management strategies which include instructions for recognizing fatigue symptoms, energy conservation techniques, tips for staying active, and addressing the psychosocial aspects of living with fatigue.