Morris_DDavid M. Morris, PT, PhD
Vice Chair and Professor

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Office Phone:  205-934-0418
Office Fax:  205-975-7787
Office Location:  SHPB 374

Department(s) and Affiliations

Physical Therapy

Areas of Research
Constraint Induced Movement Therapy

Focus of Research
CI_1Constraint-Induced Movement therapy or CI therapy is a therapeutic approach to rehabilitation of movement after stroke, multiple sclerosis (MS) and traumatic brain injury (TBI). CI therapy consists of a family of treatments that teach the brain to "rewire" itself following an injury to the brain. CI therapy is based on research by Edward Taub, Ph.D. and collaborators at this institution that showed that patients can "learn" to improve movement of the weaker parts of their bodies. These therapies have significantly improved the quality of movement and the amount of use of the more-affected arm or leg for common daily living activities in most patients who have been treated. CI therapy has been shown to markedly change the organization of activity in the brain and remodel brain structures.

The UAB CI Therapy Research Group (CITRG) was established in 1988 and I have been working with the CITRG since 1994. My role on the UAB CITRG has been to: 1) develop and standardize therapeutic activities and outcome measures used by the team; 2) explore psychometric properties of selected outcome measures developed by the team; 3) monitor adherence to research protocols by CI therapy researchers; and 4) develop and utilize educational resources for clinicians and researchers interested in using CI therapy. I have been most active in research applying CI therapy to upper extremity recover following stroke and traumatic brain injury. I served as training coordinator and process evaluator for a multi-site site of CI therapy called the EXCITE Trial.

CI_2Since 2005, I have been coordinating a 5-day CI Therapy training program for clinicians and researchers interested in applying CI Therapy clinically or in research projects.

Recent and Selected Publications
Morris DM, Crago JE, DeLuca SC, Pidikiti RD, Taub E: Constraint-Induced (CI) MovementTherapy for motor recovery after stroke.  Neurorehabilitation 1997;9:29-43.

Morris DM, Uswatte G, Crago J, Cook E, Taub E. The Reliability of the Wolf Motor Function Test for Assessing Upper Extremity Function Following Stroke.  Arch Phys Med and Rehab.; 2001; 82:750-755.

Morris DM, Taub E. Constraint-induced therapy approach to restoring function after neurological injury. Top Stroke Rehabil; 2001; 8(3):16-30.

Shaw SE, Morris DM, Uswatte G, McKay S, Meythaler JM, Taub E. Constraint-induced movement therapy for recovery of upper extremity function following traumatic brain injury. J Rehabil Res Dev 2005;42:769—778.

Morris DM, Shaw SE, Mark VW, Uswatte G, Barman J, Taub E. The influence of neuropsychological characteristics on the use of CI therapy with persons with traumatic brain injury. NeuroRehabilitation 2006; 21:131-137.

Morris DM, Taub E, Mark VW. Constraint-induced movement therapy: characterizing the intervention protocol. Europa Medicophysica 2006; 42:257-268.

Wolf SL, Winstein CJ, Miller JP, Taub E, Uswatte G, Morris D, Giuliani C, Light KE, Nichols-Larsen D. Effect of constraint-induced movement therapy on upper extremity function 3 to 9 months after stroke: the EXCITE randomized clinical trial. JAMA, 2006;296: 2095-2104.

Blanton S, Morris DM, Prettyman MG, McCulloch K, Redmond S, Light KE, Wolf SL. Lessons learned in participant recruitment and retention: the EXCITE Trial. Phys Ther 2006;86:1520-1533.

Wolf SL, Winstein CJ, Miller PJ, Thompson PA, Taub E, Uswatte G, Morris DM, Blanton S, Nichols-Larsen D, Clark PC. Upper limb function in stroke survivors who have received constraint-induced movement therapy: follow-up of the EXCITE randomized trial. Lancet Neurol. 2008; 7: 33-40.

Morris DM, Taub E, Macrina DM, Cook E, Geiger BF.  A Method for Standardizing Procedures in Rehabilitation: Use in the EXCITE Multisite Randomized Controlled Trial. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2009;90:663-668.

Morris DM, Kitchin EM, Clark DE. The physical therapist as an important member of the nutrition management team. Physio Theory and Practice. 2009; 25:408-423.

Wolf SL, Thompson PA, Winstein CJ, Miller JP, Blanton SR, Nichols-Larsen DS, Morris DM, Uswatte G, Taub

E, Light KE, Sawaki L The EXCITE stroke train: comparing early and delayed constraint-induced movement therapy. Stroke. 2010; 41:2309-2315.

Morris DM. Aquatic therapy to improve balance dysfunction in older adults. Topics in Ger Rehab. 2010;26:104- 119.

Woodbury M, Velozo CA, Thompson PA, Light K, Uswatte G, Taub E, Winstein CJ, Morris D, Blanton S, Nichols-Larsen DS. Measurement structure of the Wolf Motor Function Test: Implications for motor control theory. Neurorehab Neur Rep. 2010; 24:791-801.