By Dr. Brian McDonoughSponsored By Independence Blue Cross

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — It is a major medical tenet that when a person suffers a stroke there needs to be immediate care and, if necessary, delivery of medication.

The quicker a person gets to the emergency room or receives care, the greater the chance for a good prognosis.

Perhaps equally important is the need to get physical therapy and overall therapy for the damage that has been done.

A new report in the Journal Neurology finds that conventional therapy can do wonders for improving arm and hand function after a stroke.

This conventional rehabilitation can be quite helpful.

One of the problems that we find is that it is often difficult to find a physical or occupational therapist, especially in areas with not as much medical care.

The new study finds that virtual reality therapy was as effective, and in some cases superior, to conventional therapy.

Virtual reality could be an alternative for people to use as a supplement to their standard therapy after a stroke.