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Bell's Palsy

Bells-P_bells_palsy_image.jpg Bell’s Palsy   Bells Palsy is a weakness of the muscles on one side of the face, often affecting young adults. The palsy is caused by damage to the facial nerve. The nerve can be affected by a number of things...

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Bell’s Palsy

 

Bells Palsy is a weakness of the muscles on one side of the face, often affecting young adults. The palsy is caused by damage to the facial nerve. The nerve can be affected by a number of things. In particular, there can be viral infection causing inflammation and swelling along the nerve which disrupts the relay of muscle activation messages to the facial muscles. The weakness be partial or total. There is often a fatigue or stress component with the viral onset, and the virus itself causes further fatigue.

The symptoms of Bell's palsy are paralysis or weakness on one side of the face, pain around the ear, poor eye closure, and poor capacity to eat and drink. The face feels heavy and can have a numb feeling from the weakness.   There can also be a difference in the way food tastes.

 


Management

The aim of any management is to reduce complications such as damage to the eye and maximise the speed and extent of recovery.

Bell's palsy usually resolves by itself within a few months and 70% of people will make full recovery without any intervention.

Eye management: Blinking naturally cleans and lubricates the cornea of the eye. If there is incomplete blinking the eye is protected with patching, eye drops and gels.

Medications may be given and have an effect. Prednisolone is a corticosteroid given to reduce the inflammation on the facial nerve. For maximum benefit this needs to start within 72 hours of onset and may continue for up to 10 days.  A summary of literature found that prednisolone led to a more complete recovery at 6 months post onset (17% incomplete if had drug and 28% if no drug) and reduction in abnormal muscle activity

Antiviral drug may be given but has so far not shown to be of benefit or add more than what the prednisolone does. (Somasundara and Sullivan, 2017).

Physiotherapy has not been demonstrated to be useful with a lack of controlled studies (Teixeira and Valbuz, 2011). There is low quality evidence that tailored facial exercises can help to improve facial function, mainly for people with moderate paralysis and chronic cases. There is low quality evidence that facial exercise reduces sequelae in acute cases.

At Neurospace we use a range of techniques to help manage the recovery depending on the severity of the weakness and time since onset. The best results are with those we see earliest post onset, but we have seen people 5 years post nerve damage and been able to reduce the severity of the weakness.

Techniques include:

  • laser therapy to help manage the inflammation of the nerve,
  • muscle stimulator to help the maintain the weak muscles and trigger their activation,
  • massage and specific facilitation techniques to maximise muscle activation
  • teaching you how to exercise correctly at home and progress the exercises.

Occasionally there are other nerves affected, such as those going to the inner ear and balance system. We help to recognise and diagnosed the symptoms associated vestibular nerve damage and help you to manage this.

Reference

Somasundara D., Sullivan F. Management of Bell’s palsy Aust Prescr 2017;40:94-7 DOI: 10.18773/austprescr.2017.030

Teixeira  LJ, Valbuza  JS, Prado  GF. Physical therapy for Bell's palsy (idiopathic facial paralysis). Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2011, Issue 12. Art. No.: CD006283. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD006283.pub3.

 

Strength Training if you have a neurological problem

Strength_20180612_steph_and_leg_press.jpg Strengthening is an important part of any fitness routine and is particularly important as we get older and the muscle bulk and bone density start to naturally reduce without actively maintaining this. Weakness can occur...

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Strengthening is an important part of any fitness routine and is particularly important as we get older and the muscle bulk and bone density start to naturally reduce without actively maintaining this.

Weakness can occur for a range of reasons in the perosn with damage to their neurological system including:

  • the loss of neural commands to activate the muscles
  • secondary loss due to doing less activity or poorly controlled activity

If you are going to do strength training that is really going to impact on how you move there are a few things that need to be considered.

Testing the muscle for how much strength there is can be complex and deficits compounded by other issues such as contracture, sensory loss, inco-ordiantion and spasms.  The muscle can have problems at different parts of the range or with different types of contractions. There may also be an influence of how the tester sets up the test position that influences the result of the strength test.   This requires a skilled practitioner to help break down the issues.

In planning what muscles are going to be strengthened and how, the effect that muscle weakness has on movement also needs to be considered in terms of the range and type of muscle activation required. There are other factors such as muscle fatigue to consider that will vary with different conditions as to how the repititions and weight loading are managed.

If you are undertaking a strengthening program and you are trying to change something specifically, eg getting up from a chair, then getting some movement retraining to ensure the muscles are learning to integrate and activate in the right way is vital. The body will not necessarily use the new strength without retraining as the motor pathways are already stored, and we have to rewire the brain.

We encourage to you to get an accurate assessment to integrate good strengthening activities into your routine.

Aquatic Physiotherapy

Aquatic-_hydrotherapy.jpg Aquatic physiotherapy (also known as hydrotherapy) is an alternative way of doing physiotherapy that offers a range of benefits that are more difficult to achieve on land when undertaking rehabilitation.  There are ...

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Aquatic physiotherapy (also known as hydrotherapy) is an alternative way of doing physiotherapy that offers a range of benefits that are more difficult to achieve on land when undertaking rehabilitation.  There are a small number of research studies completed, but they do support the improvements that can be made in the neurological population and in other populations such as people recovering from joint replacements.

 

The properties of the water offers the therapist ways to either promote relaxation and flexibility of a limb, or promote more activity and build up strength and stability within a body part depending on how the exercise is set up and progressed.    The therapist will use a range of techniques and equipment to facilitate the best outcome for the stage of the condition that is being managed.

 

Specific issues can be addressed such as muscle weakness, joint contracture, spasticity and inco-ordination.  Tasks can be modified to practice everyday activities in a safe, supported way such as sit- to stand, balance, use of arm and hand, and walking.   The level of complexity of these tasks is gradually progressed in the water.

 

The warmth of the water and the graded pressure can be important to help manage painful conditions and extra fluid in limbs.  Generally, the water enhances the overall feeling of well being and gives confidence feel movements that are difficult on land.

 

There are many conditions that benefit from treatment in the water including: 

 

  • Strokes, head injuries, spinal cord injuries
  • Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson ’s disease
  • Peripheral neuropathy, muscular dystrophies
  • Cerebral palsy 
  • Post fall recovery and balance retraining to prevent further falls
  • Chronic pain
  • Joint replacements and reconstructions
  • Spinal surgery
  • Arthritis/Fibromyalgia

 

Water may not be the best place for everyone to use for therapy. We do need to do a screening assessment to check, understand your underlying health condition and the goals you are working toward.  To get the best from your water therapy integration into land based exercises and movements is essential.

 

Neurospace is fortunate to have access to Hartley Hydrotherapy pool, which is usually around 34 degrees.  We offer continuing therapy services at the pool, or intermittent treatment to set your own individualised program with reviews.

 

Feel free to make further inquiries with our reception team.

 

 

Five easy ways to sneak exercise into your festive season:

Five-eas_activity-exercise-fitness-1556710[1].jpg The festive season is where fitness routines go to die. Sneaky drinks after work, Christmas parties, relatives visiting and stacks of incredible food. We get it! It’s easy to give in to the “festive blowout&r...

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The festive season is where fitness routines go to die. Sneaky drinks after work, Christmas parties, relatives visiting and stacks of incredible food. We get it! It’s easy to give in to the “festive blowout” and just stop exercising all together. But you shouldn’t! If you’re already thinking of retiring your sneakers until January 1st, read on.

With the inevitable increase in calorie consumption over the festive season, finding time to work out is more important than ever. It will keep away those dreaded “Christmas kilos” and help to manage your holiday stress levels (relatives, am I right?!).

If you’re struggling to stay motivated, we’ve got you covered.

Five easy ways to sneak exercise into your festive season:

 

1. Work out in the morning.

It might seem like a no-brainer, but simply switching your workouts to the morning can save your routine this Christmas. Things pop-up in the evening, especially at this time of year. 5pm work drinks, festive dinners… They all get in the way of your exercise regime. Plan ahead! Do your exercise first thing in the morning when you’re less likely to be led astray!

2. Hit the shops.

Walking is great for your health! Swap out online shopping for the real deal… Sure, braving the shops at this time of year can be scary, but all those extra steps can add up quickly!

 

3. Move at Work.

Make the most of your time at work by adding exercise into your routine. Park further away from your office, take the stairs, take a walk at lunchtime or even squeeze in a mini-desk-workout. It’s surprising what a few squats every hour can do for your health!

4. Up the Intensity.

You might not have time to spend an hour at the gym, but short, high intensity workouts can be even more effective. High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) triggers the after-burn effect, known as Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption or “EPOC”, and for this reason it’s much more effective at burning calories than your steady state or regular aerobic exercise. Try HIIT-style workouts to get the most bang for your buck.

5. Grab a mate.

Part of what makes the festive season so wonderful is catching up with friends and family. So why not recruit a workout buddy? Not only are you more likely to stick to your routine if you exercise with someone else, but it’ll also make it more fun.

If you need some help getting motivated this Christmas, chat to an expert. An Accredited Exercise Physiologist can help you to exercise right, regardless of your health status or level of experience.

Christmas Trading Hours

logo Neurospace Clinic we will be closing for the Christmas holidays from 22nd December 2018 and will reopen 8:30am on 2nd January 2019....

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Neurospace Clinic we will be closing for the Christmas holidays from 22nd December 2018 and will reopen 8:30am on 2nd January 2019.

International Day of People with Disabilities 3rd December 2018

Internat_IPDW2.jpg To celeberate the year that was and our wonderful clients, their family members and care teams, we will be holding a twilight street party in the park opposite our clinic on 3rd December 2018! We would love to see you&nb...

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To celeberate the year that was and our wonderful clients, their family members and care teams, we will be holding a twilight street party in the park opposite our clinic on 3rd December 2018! We would love to see you here for games, sausage sizzle and musicperformed by our verey own Simon Smith and Amy Rose!

Race Runner

Race-Run_10008-1.jpg We have come across a great new "walking cycle" that helps people with limited mobility to get them out into the community and moving more....   The Petra race runner ™ allows supported walking and running des...

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We have come across a great new "walking cycle" that helps people with limited mobility to get them out into the community and moving more....

 

The Petra race runner ™ allows supported walking and running designed to allow those with limited mobility in legs to be able to use what they have and improve on this.   The beauty is the sizing from children to adults, and the range of environments the race runner goes in.   The action is upright and walking, quite different from cycling. Being upright with weight bearing through the legs will improve balance, leg strength and co-ordination, and endurance for standing and transfer tasks. This allows more potential to transfer the movements into every day activities. 

 

Read more…

https://by-conniehansen.com/product/racerunner-petra-racerunner/

Designed in Denmark and in use since at least 2010, the use race runner is now going to be used in Para athletics

https://www.dejay.com.au/wheelchair/race-running-will-be-a-world-para-athletics-event/

Dejay medical offer the opportunity to trial this in Australia. 

 

Working with your physio and the sales representative allows you to get the best device for your needs and the right training to optimise your performance with the new equipment.

 

Free Occupational Therapy drop in clinic at Neurospace!

Free-Occ_Commode_(1).jpg We are partnering with Rosella OT to offer a free Occupational Therapy drop in clinic. The first one will be Monday 24 September 11am - 12pm, and Rosella Occupational Therapy staff will be on hand to answer your question...

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We are partnering with Rosella OT to offer a free Occupational Therapy drop in clinic. The first one will be Monday 24 September 11am - 12pm, and Rosella Occupational Therapy staff will be on hand to answer your questions.

What can you expect?

A friendly OT will have a quick chat about what your needs might be, and how OT can help. There will be a variety of basic equipment for you to see and great advice on how to make things easier and safer for you.

It may include:

• Advice about selecting basic assistive equipment e.g. shower seating, toilet equipment, home seating, bed positioning equipment, kitchen / meal / dressing aids
• Advice on setting up / using existing assistive equipment
• Advice about installing basic home modifications e.g. lift off doors, rails, door wedges
• Falls prevention advice
• Equipment Loan Service (ELS) referrals for basic equipment needs

 

If you have more complex conditions or needs, you may need further individual assessment to meet your goals. This can be discussed too, as well as the options for getting the support you need.

 

This will run as a drop-in clinic, so all you need to do is pop in to the clinic on Monday the 25 September between 11am and 12pm. There may be a little wait, so best to bring a book to read or you can pop up the road for a coffee while you wait. Any questions, please call us on 6162 0450.

 

 

 

Camino for a Cure: Trek for Parkinson’s 2018

Camino-f_jeff.jpg One of our Neurospace regulars, Jeff, is trekking in Spain to raise funds and awareness for Parkinson's Disease. We are little envious that we all can't join him, but the best we can do is get behind him and help gather ...

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One of our Neurospace regulars, Jeff, is trekking in Spain to raise funds and awareness for Parkinson's Disease. We are little envious that we all can't join him, but the best we can do is get behind him and help gather as much support as we can. We hope you are inspired as much as we are!

We are all aware that further research is our best hope for finding a way to delay, stop and cure Parkinson’s Disease (PD). But in the meantime, there is no reason those of us with PD can’t have an adventure.

So, I recently signed up to Shake It Up Australia Foundation’s Camino for a Cure challenge.  This September I am travelling to Spain to raise funds for PD research by walking the last 111km of the Camino, from Sarria to Santiago de Compostela. 

I am seeking your support to raise donations for PD research and to offer you the opportunity to walk the Camino with me. 

My fund raising target is $6,000. Any amount you can give will make a difference. If you or your friends are able to make a tax deductible donation please go to:https://donate.grassrootz.com/shakeitupaust/camino-for-a-cure-trek-for-parkinsons-2018/jeff-smart ( or search for grassrootz & Jeff & Camino)

You are welcome to like my Facebook page to follow my preparations and where I hope to post daily trip photos. (https://www.facebook.com/Jeffs-Camino-for-Parkinsons-552173705176678/)

You can also support me by encouraging others to get involved.  If you have any family, friends or community groups who may be interested in supporting PD research I would appreciate if you shared this message widely.

Thank you for your friendship and support -- it means a lot to me.  Muchas gracias

Jeff

 

Simon set to ride from Sydney to Wollongong

Simon-se_bizzy2small.jpg Hi Neurospace family,   On the 4th of November, I shall be riding 82km from Sydney to Wollongong to raise money for research and support for people with MS.   I shall be riding with my wife, her father and brot...

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Hi Neurospace family,

 

On the 4th of November, I shall be riding 82km from Sydney to Wollongong to raise money for research and support for people with MS.

 

I shall be riding with my wife, her father and brother. It is a cause close to our hearts with both her father and aunty being affected with MS.

 

Her father was diagnosed at age 18. He's one of the relatively lucky sufferers with the milder and most common form of MS - remitting relapsing (RRMS). He'll be cycling with us in November. 

 

His sister, sadly is not well enough to cycle with us. She has a rarer and more aggressive version of the disease - primary progressive (PPMS). About 15% of people with MS have this type. 

We are taking part in the 2018 MS Sydney to the Gong Ride to fight MS.

Multiple sclerosis is the most common disease of the central nervous system in young adults and it strikes young people in the prime of their lives.

Currently, there is no cure.

 

Every working day, 4 Australians are diagnosed with MS and the average age of diagnosis is just 30 years old.  

 

So we're taking on this challenge to ride from Sydney to the Gong to help people living with MS get the support they need to achieve their goals and live life to the fullest.

Please donate now to support our challenge and change the lives of Australians living with multiple sclerosis.

 

Thank you for your support.

 

Simon Smith, Physiotherapist

Team Bizzy Bodies

 

 

Exercise in Cancer Care

logo The Clinical Oncology Society of Australia have released a position statement on exercise in cancer care. Clinical research has established exercise as a safe and effective intervention to counteract the adverse physical...

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The Clinical Oncology Society of Australia have released a position statement on exercise in cancer care.

Clinical research has established exercise as a safe and effective intervention to counteract the adverse physical and psychological effects of cancer and its treatment. This article summarises the position of the Clinical Oncology Society of Australia (COSA) on the role of exercise in cancer care, taking into account the strengths and limitations of the evidence base. It provides guidance for all health professionals involved in the care of people with cancer about integrating exercise into routine cancer care.

 

Main recommendations: COSA calls for:

  • exercise to be embedded as part of standard practice in cancer care and to be viewed as an adjunct therapy that helps counteract the adverse effects of cancer and its treatment;
  • all members of the multidisciplinary cancer team to promote physical activity and recommend that people with cancer adhere to exercise guidelines; and
  • best practice cancer care to include referral to an accredited exercise physiologist or physiotherapist with experience in cancer care.

Changes in management as a result of the guideline: COSA encourages all health professionals involved in the care of people with cancer to:

  • discuss the role of exercise in cancer recovery;
  • recommend their patients adhere to exercise guidelines (avoid inactivity and progress towards at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic exercise and two to three moderate intensity resistance exercise sessions each week); and
  • refer their patients to a health professional who specialises in the prescription and delivery of exercise (ie, accredited exercise physiologist or physiotherapist with experience in cancer care).

For more information and help on incorporating exercise into your recovery, book an assessment with our Exercise Physiologist, Amy Rose.

 

Authors: Prue Cormie, Morgan Atkinson, Lucy Bucci, Anne Cust, Elizabeth Eakin, Sandra Hayes, Sandie McCarthy, Andrew Murnane, Sharni Patchell and Diana Adams

Med J Aust || doi: 10.5694/mja18.00199
Published online: 7 May 2018

Optimise your mobility

Optimise_20180612_steph_and_leg_press.jpg No matter what your physical status is, it will always be changing. The body will be continually regenerating new cells and energy. The changes affect all our body systems but in particular, from a movement perspective, ...

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No matter what your physical status is, it will always be changing. The body will be continually regenerating new cells and energy. The changes affect all our body systems but in particular, from a movement perspective, change will be in a positive or negative way. Positively, there will be increased strength and flexibility and allow us to participate more easily in every day activities. Negatively, muscles and joints will get tighter, muscles weaker, and other less desired things such as weight gain, and loss of cardiovascular fitness. The noticeable reduction in mobility and increase in falling is one of the biggest triggers to knowing that the body is changing negatively and trying to understand why. My clinical observation is that these affects accelerate in a person with a disability, and that regular small interventions can stop the deterioration.

 

Turning the cycle back to positive is more challenging for the therapist where there is long standing movement changes, but is possible. The challenge in long standing disability is multifaceted including: a very accurate understanding of what is weak and strong, tight or too flexible; structural changes; neural changes; and being able to work slowly to implement change.

 

Identifying where flexibility should be increased, and which muscles could be strengthened first to improve overall quality of movement is a skill. Caution is given to not continuing to overwork the muscles that are already strong, and training given to involve the muscles that have got weaker over the years.

 

Structural changes need to be accounted for and splinting and bracing options can be considered to help this process.

 

The nervous system controls how well we move. Understanding how the nervous system might be changed in the person with movement disorders is important for how exercises are designed within every day activities. The therapist wants to achieve tasks where there can be the right amount of challenge to bring about positive change, but not too much to avoid the wrong muscle activation.  

 

In the world of disability we expect slow changes, because the underlying physical structure and neural structure are not the same as a ‘normal‘system. But experience shows that slow and focused expectations and practice will help bring improvements.

 

Overall if you note that your body is slowing down and not doing as well as it used to, consult with your local physiotherapist to determine why. If you have a disability consider looking for a therapist with special skills in helping with movement changes

 

 

Deborah Carrera

APA Titled Neurological Physiotherapist

 

Football in Canberra

Football_CP_Football_Flyer.jpg Canberra has a newly developed CP Football Program, and aiming to have an ACT team to go to the National Championships held each year in Sydney (around the end of October).  In the last two years we have had in incl...

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Canberra has a newly developed CP Football Program, and aiming to have an ACT team to go to the National Championships held each year in Sydney (around the end of October).  In the last two years we have had in include players from SA and NSW to make up an ACT team.  Capital Football are supporting the program. At the moment there are fully developed programs and squads from QLD, NSW, VIC and WA.  Programs are being developed in SA and ACT.

 

PLAYERS WANTED - ACT CP Football program. Opportunity to develop your football skills (soccer), meet new people and be part of the ACT representative team. CP Football is for people with cerebral palsy, acquired brain injury or symptoms resulting from a stroke. All ages and experience welcome. For more information visit https://capitalfootball.com.au/game-devel…/football-connect/

Contact Capital Football for more information or Kathleen Moorby . Kathleen.Moorby@heartfoundation.org.au

 

On a similar note, it has just been announced that the recently produced Pararoos documentary will be played here in Canberra on Monday 9th July at Palace Electric at 6:30pm ($20 per ticket).  This movie has been made by film maker Tom Ferguson to raise awareness of the Pararoos and tell their story.
The Pararoos is Australia’s national team for people with cerebral palsy and other disabilities.  More information about the Pararoos can found here https://www.pararoos.com.au/our-story.  All proceeds from ticket sales will go directly to the Pararoos to support them on their journey to qualify for the World Cup next year.

https://kangacup.com/exclusive-pararoos-film-screening-monday-9th-july/

Walking faster is better for your health

Walking-_walking.jpg Everyone is always telling Deb to “slow down!”, but maybe she is just trying to live a little longer. A new study has found those who report faster walking have lower risk of premature death. Compared to slow...

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Everyone is always telling Deb to “slow down!”, but maybe she is just trying to live a little longer.

A new study has found those who report faster walking have lower risk of premature death. Compared to slow walkers, average pace walkers had a 20% lower risk of early death from any cause, and a 24% lower risk of death from heart disease or stroke.

The results suggest walking at an average, brisk or fast pace may be beneficial for long term health and longevity compared to slow walking, particularly for older people.

Findings suggest it is a good idea to step up to a pace that will challenge your physiology and may even make walking more of a workout.

Long term-health benefits aside, a faster pace will get you to your destination faster and free up time for all those other things that can make our daily routines special, such as spending time with loved ones or reading a good book.

Another study has found that active people spend less time in hospital. The inactive people (taking 4,500 steps per day) averaged 0.97 days of hospital care per year. The more active people (taking 8,800 steps per day) needed only 0.68 days of care per year.

If we could get everyone to walk more, what effect would this have on health services? Considering only the people aged over 55, at a minimum it would reduce the need for hospitalisation by 975,000 bed days per year, for a saving of $1.7 billion dollars. Not a bad outcome for getting on your feet a bit more!

And getting an extra 4300 steps per day is not much. It’s just 40 minutes walking, which might include going to the shops, picking up kids, or taking the stairs at work.

Let us know how you go!

Knee pain? Surgery vs conservative management

Knee-pai_Knee_Photo_918.jpg Recent media attention has given a lot of credence to exercise to minimise the need for surgery with exercise. This is not new information in the physiotherapy world and we have known the benefits of the right exercises...

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Recent media attention has given a lot of credence to exercise to minimise the need for surgery with exercise.

This is not new information in the physiotherapy world and we have known the benefits of the right exercises for a long time and also the problems created with the wrong exercises. The important emphasis in this article is twice a week supervised exercise. Many people will put the effort in after the surgery, but if they started earlier with the same intensity the story could be very different.

When approaching knee pain at Neurospace, our team of physiotherapists, exercise physiologists and massage therapists have a 4-pronged approach:

1. Alignment: from the feet up through the knee, hips and spine we will help restore the biomechanical alignment. This will often be about flexibility of certain structures that are tight and contributing to poor wear pattern of the knee.

2. Strength: for the ankle, knees, hip, core as needed, focusing on the imbalances and then a more global approach. In particular, strength with eccentric and closed chain emphasis is important for knee control.

3. Motor control: to stabilise the alignment through stance phase of gait and then into more advanced activities including stairs.

4. Laser therapy: for pain relief, accelerated healing, reduction of scarring and to help restore the knee cartilage.

Your current weight may be a factor.  This may need attention with general reconditioning and fitness work, and diet advice. Losing a few kilograms can make a big difference on reducing the pressure going through your knees.

How much weight is going through your knees during different activities?

Walking across level ground: 1.5x your bodyweight

Up and down stairs: 2-3x bodyweight

Squatting to tie your shoelace or pick something up: 4-5x your bodyweight

Bracing may also be an option to help support and offload the knee while trying to rebuild the strength and control.  This needs to be carefully considered and fitted to get the best outcome.

Deborah Carrera

Physiotherapist

We need help!

logo I had with me today a youngish couple, and they needed help. Bruce started having balance issues two years ago, till he gradually stopped walking freely and started using a walking frame. In February he received a diagno...

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I had with me today a youngish couple, and they needed help. Bruce started having balance issues two years ago, till he gradually stopped walking freely and started using a walking frame. In February he received a diagnosis of Cerebellar ataxia. Bruce is only 49 years old and has stopped work due to increasing difficulties. In getting that diagnosis Bruce has been to endless doctors, neurologists, had extensive testing including 5 MRIs. In all that searching, no one has suggested having neurological physiotherapy input. No one has suggested that change would be possible to make their lives easier and stop the slow deterioration. Bruce and his wife had tears in their eyes as they discussed their frustration with the system. In today’s session we were able to identify clear things to change and give them strategies to start improving his safety in transfers and walking. We are confident over the next 2 months there will a significant difference in his abilities and capacity to move around.

The question remains, why is specialised assessment so undervalued, and the role of physiotherapy and exercise not recognised in all neurological disorders? Neurospace has been here for 8 years and we continue to grow and make in difference in the lives of people with complex movement issues.

Great results from laser therapy in hand osteoarthritis - reducing pain and improving function

Great-re_rosalie_hands.jpg Coralie is a craft enthusiastic, particularly enjoying beading work. She had heard about the Gigalaser and wanted to try out for the arthritic pain in her hands. On assessment the hands did show typical osteoarthritis ch...

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Coralie is a craft enthusiastic, particularly enjoying beading work. She had heard about the Gigalaser and wanted to try out for the arthritic pain in her hands. On assessment the hands did show typical osteoarthritis changes with extensive swelling through the small joints of the hand , deformity with joint angle changes and loss of strength. We started with laser last December and after only 3 sessions Coralie was certain that the hands were definitely improved, having less pain at all times and better ability to do her beading work.

The significant effects were also noted by February by her massage therapist. Coralie has continued to have laser therapy every 2-3 weeks, with the effects lasting longer each time. Her excited " I can't believe it" is a real joy to hear as she goes into this winter with far less pain than last year. Clinically there is now minimal swelling, the progressive deformity has stopped, the fingers have regained full flexibility and she no longer takes pain medication.

If you are interested in trying this for your arthritis, we would start with an initial 45-60 minute consultation, with 4-6 sessions to follow up with treatment. Many times we will also suggest other therapy, particularly to strengthen the body to take strain off the area, or specific physiotherapy to align the body. If you have any questions or would like to book an appointment, we would love to hear from you!

Rosalie hands

 

Where’s your walking stick?

logo When I saw Gwen this week she was commenting on how she is feeling so much more confident on her feet, that she keeps going out without her walking stick.  And people are noticing.  Gwen saw us initially for di...

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When I saw Gwen this week she was commenting on how she is feeling so much more confident on her feet, that she keeps going out without her walking stick.  And people are noticing. 

Gwen saw us initially for dizziness which was found to be a mixture of things including BPPV (Benign Paroxysmal Positioning Vertigo, vestibular hypofunction and unsteadiness due to poor vision and weakness on one side of her body.  Over five sessions we worked on the various problems. 

What is BPPV?

The brain registers dizziness on head movement because something (usually an otoconia crystal) is in one ear that gives an error message that confuses the brain when the head is moved in a certain direction.  This requires a special head manoeuvre to move the crystal into the right spot.  This usually only takes 1-2 times to do.

And Vestibular Hypofunction?

Vestibular hypofunction is where the inner ear works less well than it should.  The balance system in the middle ear is made of hair cells.  With ageing or trauma the hair cells can reduce and provide less sensory information to help the overall balance system.   But they can be tuned up and helped to work as best they can with the right exercises.  So Gwen has been doing exercises targeted to her current abilities.

Unsteadiness has multiple causes, and in Gwen’s case we picked just three additional exercises that were going to strengthen the weak area and improve her overall steadiness.  In particular, we have focused on improving sensory information coming in from the feet to help substitute for the reduction of sensory information from the eyes and ears.   We also did manual therapy (hands on work) to improve the neck and back alignment and looseness so that it could also help with providing better sensory information.

Gwen is so happy with the increased confidence in mobility she is planning to check in once a month to keep her back and neck working well and to progress her exercises.  We still encourage Gwen to use the walking stick as a precaution but it is lovely she is no longer dependent on it!

 

GigaLaser off to a great start!

GigaLase_image001.jpg Deborah loves hew new GigaLaser and is finding really interesting results with our neurological, musculoskeletal and vestibular clients. The GigaLaser came all the way from Denmark, where they have been developing this t...

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Deborah loves hew new GigaLaser and is finding really interesting results with our neurological, musculoskeletal and vestibular clients. The GigaLaser came all the way from Denmark, where they have been developing this technology since 1982 (before some of our therapists were even born!). Here is a great success story from our friends in Denmark. If you have any questions regarding laser therapy, please get in touch.

There’s no doubt that the GigaLaser has made a huge difference on my knee…

"It’s almost a miracle that I’m able to play handball today, I’m so happy that my team has such a great medical staff, as well as a partnership with FysioDanmark Randers, which makes it possible to get laser treatments.”

So says professional handball player Gitte Andersen, from the Danish handball team Randers HK. She’s referring to her team’s partnership with FysioDanmark Randers (a large physical therapy clinic in Denmark) and the treatments she received, after suffering from a long-term injury that had her nearly give up hope of ever returning to the sport again.

Previous meniscus and ACL injuries, and subsequent surgeries, had caused great damage to the cartilage in her knee. Followed by great pain. In November 2014, the pain had grown intense, and the months that followed were not exactly easy for Gitte Andersen.

In February 2015, it was over. “I just couldn’t do it anymore”, she says.

“I felt excruciating pain doing everyday things like climbing stairs, and our team physician didn’t think I’d ever be able to play handball again. I, too, was afraid I’d never return to the court again.”

A physical therapist and the GigaLaser

Gitte Andersen received her first treatment with the GigaLaser in August 2015, and in the weeks that followed she visited FysioDanmark Randers 2-3 times a week. Pictured above is Gitte Andersen, receiving a treatment with the GigaLaser, next to physical therapist, Atle Roestad, of FysioDanmark Randers.

“I actually felt a difference after the first treatment but it was probably after 7-8 treatments that I was able to do more than previously, without pain”, says Gitte Andersen.

She kept getting better and continued to receive at least one treatment a week. After learning that she was pregnant, due in April 2016, she decided to take it easy on the handball training.

“I kept up with the GigaLaser treatments and built up my basic fitness, but playing handball would have to wait until after my maternity leave”, says Gitte Andersen.

A great comeback

In July 2016, she was training alongside her teammates for the upcoming season. The GigaLaser treatments were intensified, and although her knee did have to re-adjust to the movements on the court, Gitte Andersen played her first league match in 1.5 years, in September.

“It was amazing to do a comeback! Everyone said I’d never play again but thanks to the long break off the court, all the help I’ve gotten from our team physician and physical therapists, and all the treatments with the GigaLaser, I was once again able to throw my team jersey on”, Gitte Andersen says, thrilled.

“It’s really amazing that the elite athletes in town have welcomed the GigaLaser with such open arms. The Randers HK players alone have received just short of 200 GigaLaser treatments in the last year, and we’ve had really great results. But it’s Gitte Andersen’s challenging case that’s the best success story of them all”, says Atle Roestad.

PowerMedic Lasers helps you get off to a great start with the GigaLaser

Our goal is that all athletes, as well as everyone else, have access to faster recovery after injury. And we are, of course, always available with help and support – to get you off to the best start possible, offering GigaLaser treatments in YOUR clinic.

Tell me more about the GigaLaser!

Our goal is that all athletes, as well as everyone else, have access to faster recovery after injury.
And we are, of course, always available with help and support – to get you off to the best start possible, offering GigaLaser treatments in YOUR clinic.

 

September 8th is World Physiotherapy Day!

Septembe_Image_world_physio_day.PNG The theme this year is 'add life to years', highlighting the important role  physiotherapist play in healthy ageing. Physiotherapists are health professionals who have a key role in helping people wit...

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The theme this year is 'add life to years', highlighting the important role  physiotherapist play in healthy ageing. Physiotherapists are health professionals who have a key role in helping people with long-term conditions achieve their goals, fulfil their potential and participate fully in society. They work with people to maximise movement and functional ability. If you have problems that affect your mobility, ask us how one of our physiotherapists can help you get back on your feet.