The NeuroRecovery Training Institute Launches Exciting New Course, the Neuromuscular Recovery Scale (NRS)

New Course Teaches Instrument for Assessing Recovery in Individuals with Spinal Cord Injury

The NeuroRecovery Training Institute (NeuroRTI), created to promote a culture of evidence-based practice (EBP) within the neurologic physical therapy profession, is excited to announce the launch an online course on a new instrument for assessing recovery in individuals with Spinal Cord Injury, the Neuromuscular Recovery Scale (NRS).

The Neuromuscular Recovery Scale (NRS) was developed by clinicians and scientists in the Christopher Reeve Foundation NeuroRecovery Network (NRN) at 7 outpatient clinical sites in the U.S. The NRS is innovative and unique in that recovery scores are based on a comparison to pre-injury performance criteria or how a task was performed one day prior to SCI. Therapists select from a “toolbox” of assessments to provide a baseline and plan treatments. The NRS differs distinctly as it does not allow the patient to use compensatory strategies during performance of the assessment items (e.g. sitting, sit-up, trunk extension, reaching, standing, walking). Thus, the NRS uniquely assesses “how” the task was performed without compensation while many outcome measures focus on whether the task was accomplished regardless of “how”.

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:
1) Identify the specific use of the Neuromuscular Recovery Scale relative to other measurement instruments in rehabilitation and research of persons with spinal cord injury.
2) Explain the basis for development of the NRS and the scientific literature supporting its use as a measurement tool.
3) Competently conduct a standardized NRS assessment of adult patients with a spinal cord injury with varied levels of injury and severity.
4) Competently and reliably score performance on the Neuromuscular Recovery Scale of patients with varied levels of injury and severity.
5) Understand the use of the NRS to assess patient performance, identify therapeutic goals for progression, and establish directions for therapeutic intervention.

Dr. Andrea Behrman, a founder of NeuroRTI, PT, PhD, and Professor, Department of Neurological Surgery at the University of Louisville (UofL), John H.P. Maley Lecture Award Recipient says, “The Neuromuscular Recovery Scale fills a gap in our ‘neurological assessment toolbox’ by providing a means to quantify recovery without the use of compensation strategies. The introduction of this tool for both clinical and research purposes is timely with the advent of activity-based therapies and adjunctive medical approaches to foster recovery from spinal cord injury and other neurological injuries and disorders.”

For more information about the NeuroRecovery Training Institute’s postprofessional educational programs please visit