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05/07/2016 21:11:47
Guest Hello all my name is Roy on 20th of feb2015 I had mini stroke then23rdfebhad a massive stroke but hey I'm still alive it's very hard for me as I was very active now I'm a total mess I can do most things using other hand leg shakes when I walk so don't walk far can't use left hand or arm still but have been told I can have some more therapy so I'm hoping they work me hard I need to get my hand and arm working so I can get on with my life sorry for putting it on here but have read most of what all you other unlucky people have said an it's made me feel a wee bit better about myself thankst to you all for sharing if any of you want to add me on facebook feel free to add me my name is Roy fitch when you search my name I'm the one with a suit on no hair
11/05/2016 03:42:13
Hi, I am 20 years of age and I'm a stroke survivor, this happened two years ago & I can't get my fingers to open up for itself I always have to use my other hand. Can anyone give me some tips in how I can get back movements? I'd really appreciate it. Thank you
13/10/2015 18:03:11
Guest Oh,I'm so sorry,I know just what that's like. My grandmother who raiesd me had the same thing happen but with cancer. It's perfectly ok to feel like that,when you see a loved one in pain you don't want them to have to continue like that. It's wonderful that you understand there's a time for everyone to go and this is your mother's time. Pray God will take her to a much more wonderful place soon,and in the meantime spend as much time with her as possible,let her know how much she means. Best wishes to her and you.
22/08/2010 06:59:08
Guest l still cannot accept my mum having a stroke
17/05/2010 10:04:40
Guest hello to all survivors!!! my name is soniya mundy and our son is a stroke survivor aged 11 years old.he lost all his left side through his brain haemorrhage and stroke.we have been using the mirror box therapy which has gained back 50% fine motor skills,kray's d.t teacher in school made it for him!! we also use theraputic putty,this putty is a god send and has helped krays fingers move induvidually!!!! i have copies of exercises to send to people if they would like!!! i run the only u.k based website just for childhood stroke support.www.childstrokesupport.com we help all families xxxx
15/05/2010 12:07:10
Posts 6
I would be grateful if anyone visitng this page could take the time to fill out this short survey which will only take 2 mins just to find out the exercies people use! Thanks to everyone with their responses below

Just copy and paste the below link

AnnaBig Grin
12/05/2010 05:32:32
Guest Hello there to all the Stroke survivors,
As a 46 year old when i suffered my first stoke rounds I had a mini stroke in May 2009 and a major leak in June 2009 which has left me with leftside paralysis and weakness. I have been so angry because the change to my life was so extreme now nearly a year later I find that I am slowly accepting the inevitable that yes recovery is slow and I may not even get use of my left hand or arm again. But I remain positive and openminded that I have Faith in the blessings from my Heavenly Father that I will achieve what is necessary for me to enjoy my life as a mother and grandmother for it is them that keep me smiling. And to have found a website where I feel very comfortable in discussing my fears and anxieties is a godsend. I am going to try some of the strengthening exercises recommended by Madfit and as I progress I will keep you all uptodate. I feel compelled to give you all an outpouring of love from the depths of my soul as we journey together along this pathway xxxx I have no speech impediments just that I had a wee bit of damage to my vocal chord so I can't sing like I used to. I use a four pronged cane to assist me in getting around and my left arm is forever in a sling due to its dead weight.
10/05/2010 19:10:56
Posts 1
my husben had a stroke in 06 from a car wreak!!he gets very made because he cant do much because he only has one hand any one help
03/03/2010 16:03:58
Posts 6
Hi Peter O,

Thanks for your suggestion of the mirror box. Yeah I have came across this in my medical journal research and have also seen the mirror box being used in a hospital. Its an intersting topic and amazing this can help recovery.

03/03/2010 16:01:24
Posts 6
Hi Madeline,

Thats great that you didn't give up hope and continued to try and get the strength back in your right arm and hand. You mentioned putting pasta in a bowl and lifting it out, was there any other forward reach exercies you did? did u feel this one helped? I am desiging a product to help people get back the strength in the arm and this is the main exercise I focused on to improve so your opinion is greatly appreciated.

Have u used mirror therapy or mental imagery to help with your recovery at all?

Thanks Anna
03/02/2010 19:35:52
Posts 11
some may consider looking into the bio-ness. i am so excited, i get fitted and evaluated for this device this week. i am very stoked. i need my arm back im too young to lose it
01/02/2010 17:34:14
Posts 1

I had a pretty bad stroke in October 2002, when I was 55 years old with a good job. I was totally paralyzed on my right side (leg and arm). I had about 3 months in-patient therapy, and 2 months outpatient therapy. Eventually went home in a wheelchair.

I was told I probably would walk eventually with a cane, but several doctors told me I would never have function of my right arm and hand. I told them I don't accept their prognosis. I might add that I am a right-handed person, so that made it even worse. I had to learn to write and do things with my left hand. But here's the good news, so don't get discouraged!

After having therapy in the first year, because that’s all medical insurance would cover, my doctor suggested I join a gym/health club since most of the equipment they used in therapy were available at the gym and some more. I have been going 2 or 3 times a week for 2 years now. It's incredible I got most my strength in my arm back mainly on my own at the gym. My right arm and hand are so strong compared to what was zero, and my legs have become stronger also.

All my fingers are functioning, in fact I am touch typing this note, that is using both hands and all fingers to type. The neurologist who originally gave me my bad news, couldn't believe it.

I'm not saying it was easy, it takes a strong will, determination, and alot of work. It was 7 years Oct. 1st since I had my stroke.

Doctors don't know everything, they only go by what they've heard of read about. It's we stroke survivors who really know the facts and can attest to them. By the way, it's nearly 5 months now that I started to drive again.

Here are some at home exercises which helped me tremendously which I devised myself and some from therapy.
1. Take your arm, and with the other hand massage the affected arm, trying to loosen the muscles. If you keep doing this, eventually it will loosen up. In rehab this method is called “Miofacial Release”. The therapist did for me and I continued to do it at home. It really worked on me. Ask at Rehab if they offer it.

2. Stengthen your whole arm including your fingers, by taking a plastic grocery bag and put a few groceries, adding more and more weight when you think you can. You'll be surprised, by carrying the bag with 2 or 3 fingers, you'll see how strong both the fingers and arm become and the muscles will loosen up. This does 2 things, it not only strengthens your fingers, but by holding a bag of groceries it also straightens your arm to a full extension.

3. With the affected hand, pull the fingers on the opposite hand, one at a time, and keep stretching them out. Stretch each joint on the finger, the 3 joints on every finger. I constantly did this. My hand used to be like a claw. You should see it now. I am even touch typing this note using every finger on both hands. It takes a strong will, perseverance and a lot of work.

Take the good hand and pull on the thumb stetching it, farther and farther from the index finger. After a while, you'll notice you can separate the thumb from the index finger until it is normal like your good hand.

4. Then when you have accomplished this, just try opening and closing the fingers, over and over until they become strong.

5. Use a tight springed clothes pin, and keep pressing it open, this will also give strength to the fingers.

6. Put some small type shaped pasta or marbles in a bowl and try picking one at a time up. This gives coordination.

7. Did they give you puddy in therapy? That was also good to build strength.

8. It's very important to do exercises all the time. Just relaxing in bed, sitting in a chair or anyplace. I even used to do this when someone took me by car shopping, after a while it will be instinctive. I can personally attest to these exercises helping.

9. Use the squeeze ball method to gain strength, while watching TV, in a car, etc.

The main thing to remember, never say never and have lots of faith and practice, practice, practice every day. Hope this helps you and I hope I have given some encouragement! Good luck.
18/12/2009 20:37:57
Posts 46
Well, you probably will get the comment that recovery is proximal to distal. i absolutely do not believe this is the case since the way arm/hand functuionality is mapped in the brain does not depend on the proximal control first. Your hand may come later depending whether that damage is in the penumbra or a dead area. you may want to do some mental imagery and mirror-box therapy for your hand to at least start the neuroplasticity. I imagine playing my sax but the problem is that I had just started two years prior so I don't have the fingerings down very good. I figure that any movement that i can get working is good becuase then i can believe that eventually some of the more difficult movements will come around. So don't worry abut doing your leg first. The only sure way that your hand will not come around is if you don't even try. Considering how much dead area I have to recover I have to believe in miracles and be persistent in the face of continual failure.
3.5 years out
edited by oc1dean on 18/12/2009
17/12/2009 01:04:02
Posts 11
im new to the board. i had a stroke 11 months ago; right side. rehab was slow at first. i am now walking with a quad cane. im getting bummed out again, because i thought by now i would have some finger movement. i do have a little shoulder retyurn and my bnicep and tricep are coming slowly. perhaps ive concentrated on walking too much. is there a real chance i will not regain the ability to use my hand

<typing one handed sorry for any mistakes>
22/11/2009 21:21:17
Posts 46
Anna, thanks for describing what you have looked into already. I made an incorrect assumption that you had just decided this project on a lark assuming that it would be easy. I am using the mirror in the lap but not with enough frequency to claim any success. As far as CIMT goes I believe it is quite successful. I would do this if I had enough movement in my hand to even attempt it, extensors will not work. The biofeedback thing would be extremely helpful. The only thing so far I have found helpful for finger intrinsics is thera band hand trainer sheets. No one seems to be looking into what therapy will recover the intrinsics. Although I did find out that if you overexert your flexors to complete fatigue, your intrinsics will start to fire. Regarding CIMT it actually doesn't require a therapist at all unless you need the nagging part.

Anna, nice to find a therapist that doesn't prove the breakfast saying of bacon and eggs, The chicken is involved but the pig is committed; where most of the medical staff seems to be only involved but the survivor is committed. Committed as in perservering and maybe going insane with all the repititions required.
22/11/2009 17:40:47
Peter O
Posts 111
There is an interesting chapter about ‘Mirror Therapy’ in Norman Doide’s book “The brain That Changes Itself” (2007) Sorry if you are already familiar with it! He refers to the work of V S Ramachangdran who developed the mirror box some years ago for amputees suffering from phantom limb pain (if you google his name there are some great videos of his lectures and demonstrating the box! The mirror box was introduced later for use with stroke patients, I think!
Peter O
20/11/2009 18:49:48
Posts 6
Hi All,

Thanks for all your replies as they all help.

In reply oc1dean post, I was focusing my research on mirror therapy which claims to help rewire the brain in oreder to find new pathways for carrying out movements. This led me onto looking at recovering the muscles in the hand also through different therapies such as constraint induced therapy and general physiotherapy and occupational exercises of the hand.

Has anyone had experience of mirror therapy or constraint induced therapy? If so was it of benefit? I personally am not too sure if iconstrainst induced therapy is of much benefit. I would say it is very difficult to carry out and need a lot of time from an occupational therapist.

Also active observation is s new nuerorehabilitative therapy for the brain to get back function as well as the hand. This sort of therapy can be used through the use of the Nintendo Wii believe it or not so if anyone has had experience in a hospital or at home of using active observartion therapy it would be great to get some feedback.

Also Peter you say that you found plasticine exercises very demanding but persevered with them. In regards to this, the product I want to design will have some sort of biofeedback in which as a person you can see that they are progressing. for example if you squeeze a ball repeatidly as an exercise this can become mudane im sure and motivation can be hard so, say if you squeezed a ball with different amounts of pressure from the hand, different sounds would go off. This is a simple example but I want to design a product that gives the patient even the slightest bit of motivation to carry out the exercise. Personally Im not a fan of exercise and find it very hard to motivate myself but I think once a person sees the benefit that is occuring they will be more motivated. Do you agree? That is really interesting what you say about juggling balls also. I have been doing a lot of research into brain plasticity and it is quite amazing!

Thanks for your time,
edited by AnnaH on 20/11/2009
20/11/2009 08:43:42
Guest As far as I 'm concerned, I'm afraid that modern medicine can do little in stroke recovery, so I suggest you can take some alternative medicine. Meditation, acupuncture, hypnosis, reflexology, herbalmedicine, and so on are all alternative medicine, and I think there must be one can help you. My friend's mother caught stroke and we are looking for any treatment to help her. I think Traditional Chinese Medicine should be my best choice. After our searching, oral pellet and massage will improve the condition. We are now considering to take Kangnaowan Pellet, which is a Traditional Chinese Medicine, and also we will do massage to help her recover.
Hope it will help you.
19/11/2009 15:46:02
Peter O
Posts 111
I had a left sided Ischemic stroke over 2 years ago at the age of 65. The right side of my body was paralysed along with poor vision speech balance and memory. I have made a remarkable recovery in all areas except memory is not as good.
I was in hospital for 5 weeks and when I started to get a bit of feeling in my right hand I was given exercises to do which included picking up small items and squeezing different strength clothes pegs moving them between rails. I also did exercises with plasticine. I found these exercises very demanding but persevered with them. It took a long time for my balance to improve which limited my rehabilitation. A number of exercises were prescribed which I could do in bed e.g. using Dynaband on my legs I also continued using the plasticine for developing movement in my hand and fingers.
I have read quite a few books on brain plasticity by such as Sharron Begley, Peter Levington and Norman Doidge. They made me more optimistic about recovering from a stroke. Another study although not related to stroke I found interesting I came across reported on the ScienceDaily Website (Oct. 17, 2009) — Learning to juggle leads to changes in the white matter of the brain, an Oxford University study has shown. The research appears to show improved connectivity in parts of the brain involved in making movements necessary to catch the balls. I have only been doing it with one ball but when I started 2 weeks ago I couldn’t even catch the ball more than 4 or 5 times. I am now catching it over 100 times without dropping it.
I think thats eneogh for now Peter O
19/11/2009 15:34:41
Posts 46
Anna, What you first need to do is determine whether you are going to try for rehabilitation the easy way by only focusing on the penumbra and the normal spontaneous recovery, which is what everyone claims success for. Or do you want to focus on the very difficult job of trying to recover function of totally dead areas of the brain. Try asking your instructor if they even have any clue about this, So for me the motor cortex controlling the hand is dead and my complete pre-motor cortex is dead. So if the pre-motor cortex is involved in hand function then involuntary control also needs to recover. You could also ask the question - How much sensation is needed for hand recovery? This book may help, Sensory re-education of the hand after stroke by Yekeutiel, Margaret.
I think you will find that stroke rehabilitation has barely moved in 2400 years. Hippocratic dictum that ‘It is impossible to cure a severe attack of apoplexy and difficult to cure a mild one’ .
The first thing you will need to overcome is spasticity, which if you believe the researchers is actually helpful for stroke recovery. Lots of survivors have a fisted hand. So in order to even get movement you have to stop the spasticity first.
edited by oc1dean on 19/11/2009
edited by oc1dean on 19/11/2009
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