A doctor with Parkinson’s disease
Cognitive Rehabilitation in Cerebral Palsy
Child with Cerebral Palsy starts walking…
An art teacher’s dream
Her family history includes father working in a cycle repair shop and mother housewife. She has one younger sister also. As for her past medical history, she was growing fine till 2013 when she started suffering from bouts of fever with recurrent respiratory infections. This was followed by progressive weakness in upper and lower limbs. Eventually she lost her ability to perform daily activities like bathing, dressing, grooming, eating, and toileting independently. Her condition started deteriorating and she was unable to walk, talk and follow commands. She was brought to Plexus in December 2017.
On assessment it was found out that she had slow response to verbal commands, poor reaction time, very poor postural control and low arousal level. Whenever she attempted to walk she had frequent falls as her balance was also poor. Besides, she had poor eye-hand coordination, coupled with poor speech.
She underwent three and a half months of intensive treatment at Plexus. She was treated by a specialized medical team involving neurologist, physiotherapist, occupational, speech and language therapists.
It was a pleasant surprise that after treatment her condition improved by almost 50-60 percent! There was a noticeable improvement in her level of arousal. She was more alert, started to respond faster to verbal commands. She was able to carry out all her activities independently. Her walking balance, which was much of a concern in the past, showed signs of great improvement. What is more, after the treatment she was able to play cricket with her younger sister! Her holistic development does not end there, her speech improved by 50%. Now she is able to recite rhymes like “twinkle twinkle little stars” with actions.
For her parents seeing her improvement was nothing short of a miracle.
A Holistic Approach Towards Treatment of Autism
A holistic approach was initiated to target various aspects for an overall development. This approach targeted the underlying neurological system as well as the skills and behaviours that were super imposed on it. Occupational therapy treatment, which formed the crux of the intervention was focused on developing the gross motor skills, fine motor skills, socio-emotional and academic abilities, dealing with sensory issues, facilitating active participation in daily activities and play with peers.
Play based therapy was used as an important tool to allow the child familiarize himself to his new surroundings. He was allowed to explore the environment freely rather than forcing him to perform therapeutic activities. Creating a strong trustworthy therapeutic rapport with the child was a major goal. Gradually, as the child became comfortable, rigorous therapies were started. A complete sensory program was created for the child. Various techniques such as deep joint compression, neutral warmth, calming activities and use of physical activities were carried out to decrease hyperactivity and aggression. Sensory based play activities were used extensively to handle the various sensory concerns. Behavioral strategies such as use of reinforcers, time-outs were used extensively to curb temper tantrums.
Gradually, amazing changes were observed in the child. The first major change appreciated by the parents were that he is no longer aggressive and hyperactive. As the occupational therapy program progressed, the child demonstrated various improvements in every aspect. He became competent in most of the gross motor activities such as jumping, climbing stairs, running, balancing self on various surfaces. The sensory issues of the child comparatively resolved. He developed increased tolerance levels while having a haircut, brushing feet during bath. Reduction in oro-motor issues such as biting hard textures (books), shirt.
He demonstrated great development in the socio-emotional aspect of his personality. He is able to recognize, understand and express emotions (non-verbally) to parents /therapist. He attempts to interact with adults (parents, therapists) non verbally on most occasions. The child actively began exploring his environment through play. The paradigm shifted from non-purposeful to engaging in purposeful play. According to Parten’s stages of play, master ‘A’ shifted from unoccupied play (initial) to parallel play. He initiates playing ‘catch me’ with elders.
During mid-way of the program, the parents were encouraged to enroll the child in a normal school. This gave the child a regular routine, opportunities to interact with age mates and a feeling of ‘normalcy’. He gradually enjoyed attending school, interacts with age mates by singing nursery rhymes, taking part in competitions (running race), in various school activities. This was seen as an achievement as well as paved way for further socio-emotional development of the child.
He displayed great improvement in the cognitive domain too. He understands basic concepts of ‘up’, ‘down’, ‘under’ etc. He is able to identify, name shapes, colors, vegetables, fruits, alphabets (A-Z), numbers, body parts. He performs action rhymes well. Academically, he performs extremely well as mentioned by his school teachers. He actively participates in activities of daily living such as bathing, dressing, eating.
Master ‘A’s’ journey that culminated in him attending a ‘normal’ school was nothing short of a victory for his parents, Dr. Na’eem Sadiq and the occupational therapists.
Turning Setbacks Into Comebacks
About a year ago, Mr S was forced to quit his job as typing on the keyboard was fast becoming an next to impossible task. The diagnosis revealed that he was suffering from Multiple Sclerosis – a condition where nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord are damaged, resulting in severe muscle weakness, muscle spasms, and difficulty in muscle coordination.
Traditional treatment and medications used to treat Multiple Sclerosis, while modestly effective, can have side effects as well as be poorly tolerated by the patient - as was the case with Mr S. No amount of consultations with neurologists seemed to help and the weakness in his arms and legs continued to worsen. This debilitating disease was making even walking or raising arms a difficulty. On the brink of losing all hope of recovery, he was introduced to Dr Na’eem, and through him to the wonders of stem cell therapy.
After carefully evaluating his condition, the Plexus team designed an extensive program for Mr S. Our focus was on returning function, preventing relapse, and reducing the existing damage. A holistic treatment plan, which included stem cell therapy coupled with other rehabilitation techniques such as physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and Chinese medicine, was put in place.
Mr S witnessed remarkable progress through the initial rehabilitation program. Our team ensured strict adherence to the program and proper, timely care. In just a few months, his condition had improved by 85%. His arm regained strength and he could now lift weights up to two kilograms. A quick recovery was on the cards and he soon returned to his hometown and rejoined work. Today, he is living a normal productive life, so much so that he regularly plays football. Truly an incredible recovery for someone who could not even walk a few months ago. Mr S’s story is one of triumph and a true inspiration for all Multiple Sclerosis patients facing setbacks in life.
Helping Patients Reclaim Their Lives
When 65-year-old Mrs Devi from Jharkhand made arrangements to come to Plexus, she wasn’t even sure she could make the trip. Suffering from Parkinson’s Disease (PD), Mrs Devi found it excruciating to get around the house, let alone travel for treatment. Her legs were weak, her feet were partially numb, and she experienced significant hand tremors. To make matters worse, she had recently become wheelchair bound.
The mother of two and grandmother of four had been suffering from Parkinson’s for the past seven years. The disease left her severely handicapped, leaving her unable to perform simple daily activities. Her condition got worse to a point where she felt too weak to even play with her grandchildren – which she considered her greatest loss.
Over the years, her condition had continued to deteriorate, with the onset of severe imbalance issues, muscle stiffness, and slowness in her body and gait. Multiple visits to doctors and multispeciality clinics all proved futile. Traditional treatments and procedures ultimately could not bring Mrs Devi back to her grandchildren. When Mrs Devi finally arrived at Plexus, our team performed extensive diagnostics to understand her condition. After careful analysis, a complete treatment program was designed keeping her specific needs in mind. The ensuing two-month therapy focused on helping her regain strength, build endurance, and improve flexibility. Our holistic approach included a unique combination of stem cell therapy, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, acupuncture, and other rehabilitation therapies suited to a PD patient.
At the end of the two months, Mrs Devi felt a great reduction in the stiffness and tremors attacking her body. The treatment had made a huge difference in her life -- it was now possible for her to get dressed, shower, perform daily chores, and walk normally on her own.
Today, Mrs Devi lives her life without anything holding her back. She has even reported back to Plexus saying that her mood had improved a lot, she has renewed energy, and that she can now manage herself around the house independently. In fact, she even helped throw a party for her grandson’s birthday last year, where she helped with all the cooking and preparations. A year ago, this kind of activity would have been unthinkable for Mrs Davi. But thanks to Plexus, her story of recovery and rejuvenation inspires PD patients all over the world, and gives them hope that they too can regain control of their lives with the right treatment.
Making Dreams Come True
It was four years ago when Mr A, a 58-year-old businessman from Bangalore, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease (PD) after experiencing symptoms for several years prior. He initially thought it was simply a trembling spell, until he started experiencing other symptoms such as involuntary movements, muscle rigidity, and a slow shuffling gait.
Although he was able to cope with the chronic disease initially, with time, the stiffness in his neck and back, and tremors in his arms and legs made day-to-day activities increasingly painful. Visits to multiple doctors proved to be fruitless. Mr A’s condition only worsened, and soon he was unable to chew, swallow, walk, write, or even speak clearly. The trauma and depression that followed made him a recluse – withdrawing from society almost entirely.
However, there was a light at the end of the tunnel. On April 2015, Mr A visited Plexus Neuro and Stem Cell Center, albeit with little hope for improvement. Nevertheless, an in-depth initial investigation by our specialists put to motion an individual treatment route specifically designed for him and the severity of his condition. The treatment was planned to help him regain strength, endurance, and flexibility - essential needs for a PD patient. The plan comprised stem cell therapy, intensive rehabilitation programmes, physiotherapy, and occupational therapy, which steadily rebuilt Mr A’s body and motor skills to perform daily functions.
In just two months, Mr A was a changed man. The treatment significantly improved his condition; he was now able to perform his daily tasks independently. This also gave Mr A his feeling of control and agency back, as he was actually doing things to help himself.
The biggest change though, was in his mental outlook. He began to dismiss his so-far negative attitude towards his condition and adopted a more positive outlook. With his hope restored, Mr A began to re-acclimate himself with society. It was very evident that his quality of life had changed - even his unclear, mumbling voice had been replaced with a louder, stronger one.
Thanks to Plexus’ treatment, what seemed like an impossible dream for Mr A, is now a reality. He is currently close to a 95% recovery. He no longer experiences any PD symptoms and is becoming fitter, stronger, and healthier by the day. In short, Mr A’s story of perseverance and patience is an inspiration for patients worldwide suffering from Parkinson’s.