Description of mirror therapy

Mirror Therapy uses the visual feedback of two intact limbs from a mirror that is oriented parallel to the patient’s midline to improve motor functions and the perception of the affected limb.

The mirror blocks the view of the affected limb (positioned behind the mirror), so that the mirror image of the unaffected limb (positioned in front of the mirror) is superimposed on the affected limb. When looking into the mirror, the patient observes the reflection of the unaffected limb positioned as the affected limb.

When performing motor or sensory exercises with the non-affected limb, the reflection in the mirror is often perceived as affecting the paretic/painful limb. This strong visual cue from the mirror can therapeutically be used to improve motor performance and the perception of the affected limb.