Najmeh Hoseini, PT, PhD

Assistant Professor

Midwestern University 
College of Health Sciences Physical Therapy Program
Glendale Hall 327-15
19555 N. 59 Ave.
Glendale, AZ  38305

Office: (623) 572 3933


B.S. Physical Therapy Iran University of Medical Sciences (Iran) 2003
M.S. Physical Therapy Iran University of Medical Sciences (Iran) 2006
Ph.D. Human Performance Indiana University (Bloomington) 2015


The effect of brain stimulation on manual dexterity in stroke patients

According to the American Heart Association, there are 795,000 stroke survivals each year in the United States which causes both a physical and a financial burden on individuals' families and society as a whole. Upper limb, specifically hand function, impairment is one of the most common motor complications in this group of patients. I am interested in investigating a new therapeutic combination of electrical stimulation that can be delivered at rest in order to improve the manual function in patients with stroke.


One potential treatment for functional recovery in stroke patients, based on neurophysiological mechanisms of recovery, involves peripheral stimulation on motor points of two muscles, (NMES). A second potential treatment, transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), involves stimulation of the central nervous system. Weak direct currents can be applied non-invasively, transcranially and painlessly. This noninvasive emerging technique has been found helpful in facilitating the treatment in neurologic disorders like stroke.  Compared to motor practice as the method of treatment for a functional impairment post-stroke, NMES or tDCS may have certain advantages over motor practice.  Motor practice can be tiring and difficult for patients, and a substantial amount of practice may be required to observe any benefit. NMES and tDCS, in contrast, are done passively and at rest and NMES can be used on muscles that are too weak to perform any functional task. For example, wrist and fingers extension is usually affected by stroke and NMES on extensors, or tDCS over the motor representations of these areas in the brain, may be a viable treatment.

Previous research has shown that Neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) has a role in functional improvement in manual motor function in stroke patients. Also, research has shown that transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) which involves the stimulation of central nervous system through non-invasive, transcranial, weak direct currents can be used as a facilitation method in addition to the other rehabilitation techniques. Previously, through my Ph.D. studies, we found significant effect on manual dexterity in healthy subjects when using similar method (Hoseini N., Wan H., Munoz F., Block H. J., The Effect of Motor Point Associative Stimulation (MPAS) and transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) on Sensorimotor Neuroplasticity and Dexterity of Hand, under review). I am interested to examine the combination effect of NMES (on arm muscles) and tDCS (on motor cortex) in stroke survivals and investigate the functional consequences of this intervention. This combination intervention without movement therapy has never been investigated on stroke patients. The result of the functional outcome measurements may lead to clinical trial research that enables clinicians to choose this type of therapy based on the specific neural injury or disease/disorder.


Combined motor point associative stimulation (MPAS) and transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) improves plateaued manual dexterity performance

Hoseini N, Munoz-Rubke F, Wan HY, Block HJ. Neurosci Lett. 2016 Sep 21;633:134-140.

doi: 10.1016/j.neulet.2016.09.034

Adaptive Staircase Measurement of Hand Proprioception. 

Hoseini N, Sexton BM, Kurtz K, Liu Y, Block HJ.PLoS One. 2015 Aug 14;10(8):e0135757.
doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0135757. eCollection 2015.

The effect of operant-conditioning balance training on the down-regulation of spinal H-reflexes in a spastic patient.
Hoseini N, Koceja DM, Riley ZA.Neurosci Lett. 2011 Oct 24;504(2):112-4.
doi: 10.1016/j.neulet.2011.09.009. Epub 2011 Sep 16.


Anodal and cathodal tDCS as a therapy for fine motor skill impairment in Autism Spectrum Disorder
Susannah M. Owen · Najmeh Hoseini · Georgia Frey · Hannah J. Block

The effect of motor point associative stimulation (MPAS) and transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) on sensorimotor neuroplasticity and dexterity of hand
Najmeh Hoseini · Hsuan-Yu Wan · Felipe Munoz · Hannah J Block