Diffusion tensor tractography (DTT) is useful for exploring the state of the corticospinal tract (CST). An accurate estimation of the integrity of the CST in the early stage of a cerebral infarct would enable a determination of motor recovery. DTT was performed to classify CST integrity following a corona radiata infarct to evaluate if the procedure could characterize the motor outcome of the affected hand. Fifty-five patients with completely paralyzed hands due to a corona radiata infarct were recruited for the study, and DTT images were obtained within 7-30 days after a stroke. The DTI findings for the patients were classified into four groups. In type A, the CST was preserved around the infarct; in type B, the CST originated from a cortex other than the primary motor cortex; in type C, the CST was interrupted at the infarct; in type D, the CST failed to reach the infarct due to degeneration. Six months after a stroke, the motor function of the affected hand was evaluated with the motricity index (MI) for the hand, the Medical Research Council score (MRC) for finger extensors and the modified Brunnstrom classification (MBC). These indices were significantly influenced by the DTT type (p<0.05). The highest MI, MRC and MBC were seen in the DTT type A patients; the lowest MI, MRC and MBC were seen in the DTT type D patients (p<0.05). The integrity of the corticospinal tract determined by DTT obtained during the early stage of a corona radiata infarct seems to be helpful in predicting the motor outcome of the affected hand.