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Approach to Patients with Pseudobulbar Affect in Stroke: Stroke Clinical Updates

Approach to Patients with Pseudobulbar Affect in Stroke Stroke Clinical UpdatesExpiration Date: June 18, 2015

Program Overview

Stroke is one of the leading causes of long-term adult disability, affecting approximately 795,000 people each year in the U.S. Many studies have identified patient failure to arrive at the hospital in time for treatment following the stroke symptom onset as the key barrier to increasing rates of thrombolytic treatment. Stroke center personnel agree that public lack of knowledge about the appropriate response to stroke symptoms is a key barrier to stroke treatment—a barrier that has proven intransigent to many and diverse interventions.

The Approach to Patients with Pseudobulbar Affect in Stroke activity will provide a succinct update on key new evidence about Pseudobulbar Affect (PBA), a neurological disorder, is experienced by more than one million people in the United States. Additionally PBA is one of the most frequently reported post-stroke behavioral syndromes. Because PBA is under-diagnosed, and often times misdiagnosed as depression, it is under-treated or inappropriately treated. The impact of PBA on stroke survivors is social isolation and a reduced quality of life.

Purpose Statement:

To increase clinician knowledge, diagnosis, and treatment of PBA after stroke

Goals and Learning Objectives

Through participation in these activities, learners will be able to:

  • Describe the typical clinical history in PBA and techniques to elicit the phenomenon.
  • Report greater confidence in discussing PBA with patients and exploring treatment options.
  • Describe the choices for management of PBA including non-pharmacological approaches and potentially effective drugs, including the evidence supporting each option.
  • Identify the factors to be considered before prescribing specific drugs for PBA.

Target Audience

The target audience for the Approach to Patients with Pseudobulbar Affect in Stroke activity includes neurologists, neuroscience nurses, primary care professionals, physiatrists, and other rehabilitation professionals who work with stroke survivors.

Physician Credit

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and Policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint sponsorship of Medical Education Resources (MER) and National Stroke Association. MER is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Credit Designation

Medical Education Resources designates this enduring material for a maximum of 0.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Nursing Credit Medical Education Resources is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.

This CE activity provides 0.5 contact hour of continuing nursing education.

Medical Education Resources is a provider of continuing nursing education by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider #CEP 12299, for 0.5 contact hour.

For questions regarding this activity, please contact Medical Education Resources at or National Stroke Association at

Content Developed and Presented By

Howard Rosen, MD
Associate Professor of Neurology
Memory and Aging Center
University of California, San Francisco

Disclosure of Conflict of Interest

Medical Education Resources ensures balance, independence, objectivity and scientific rigor in all its educational activities. In accordance with this policy, Medical Education Resources identifies conflicts of interest with its instructors, content managers and other individuals who are in a position to control the content of an activity. Medical Education Resources resolves conflicts to ensure that all scientific research referred to, reported or used in a CME activity conforms to the generally accepted standards of experimental design, data collection and analysis. Medical Education Resources is committed to providing its learners with high-quality CME activities that promote improvements or quality in healthcare and not the business interest of a commercial interest.

Faculty Disclosures

The faculty reported the following financial relationships with commercial interests whose products or services may be mentioned in this CME activity:

Name of Faculty Reported Financial Relationship
Dr. Howard Rosen No financial relationship to disclose

The content managers reported the following financial relationships with commercial interests whose products or services may be mentioned in this activity:

Name of Content Managers Reported Financial Relationship
Michelle Murdock, Consultant No financial relationship to disclose
Erik P. Pioro, MD No financial relationship to disclose
The planners from MER have no financial relationships to disclose


The content and views presented in this educational activity are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of Medical Education Resources, National Stroke Association, and/or Avanir Pharmaceuticals, Inc. The authors have disclosed if there is any discussion of published and/or investigational uses of agents that are not indicated by the FDA in their presentations. The opinions expressed in this educational activity are those of the faculty and do not necessarily represent the views of Medical Education Resources, National Stroke Association and/or Avanir Pharmaceuticals, Inc. MER’s ANCC accreditation status does not imply endorsement by MER or ANCC of any commercial products displayed in conjunction with this activity. Before prescribing any medicine, primary references and full prescribing information should be consulted. Any procedures, medications, or other courses of diagnosis or treatment discussed or suggested in this activity should not be used by clinicians without evaluation of their patient’s conditions and possible contraindications on dangers in use, review of any applicable manufacturer’s product information, and comparison with recommendations of other authorities. The information presented in this activity is not meant to serve as a guideline for patient management.

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Get started now:

  1. Register for this activity and complete the pre-test.
  2. Read and study the educational activity.
  3. Take the post-test and evaluation for this activity. Post-test and evaluation must be completed to receive proper credit for this activity.

The activity is supported by an educational grant from Avanir Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

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