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Thread: Bio-feed back program in Florida?

  1. #1
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    Bio-feed back program in Florida?

    Could someone tell me what this involves pls?

    Thanx

  2. #2
    Senior Member giambjj's Avatar
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    Do a search on this site. There are several discussions on the subject and a number of member that have gone through the program of Dr. Buckner at Univ. of Miami.

  3. #3
    The Miami Project does reserch in biofeedback as I remember.

    http://www.miamiproject.miami.edu/

  4. #4
    Do a search for Brucker. Briefly, biofeedback is behavioral modification using electromyographic signals to tell you when muscle is being activated. So, you put these electrodes on your skin surface and then try to move a particular muscle. Initially, the movement may be very weak but will vary. In each session, you try to get the muscle activation to be consistently in the upper level of the range of activation that you can achieve. When you do that, you raise the criterion on the following session. It is very effective for teaching your brain and spinal cord what pathways you need to activate in order to move that muscle.

    Several curious things about biofeedback:

    1. What you learn with a particular movement often cannot be generalized to another. For example, Bernie Brucker at Miami trained a Brazilian pianist to relearn how to play a piano to the point where music critics thought that his music was better after his head injury and biofeedback training than before the injury. However, this person cannot use his hand to write or feed himself.

    2. Biofeedback can also be used to counteract spasticity, i.e. in the inhibitory mode.

    An experienced person should be guiding the sessions and helping teach you where to put the electrodes, etc. In order to use biofeedback, you need some voluntary movement to start with.

    Wise.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Norm's Avatar
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    I'll repeat my past post,

    I did Bio with Brucker & his trainees for six years and did not see the return promised by Dr. Brucker! I stopped going 4 years ago and I am pissed I was talked into moving from PA to South Florida by Brucker for Bio! I feel that Brucker's Trainees are not as good at doing Bio as he is. If I got to work with him more, things might have been different, but he's alway on the go, which is sad for people like me that made a major move only to be dissapointed!

  6. #6
    Norm, I had a similar experience. I think Dr. Brucker is competent and if he'd administered the therapy, it probably would have been effective but I was not impressed with his assistants. I was also told that I would regain something, even if it was as small as moving my big toe, before moving from MD to FL. It was a good move and I don't regret it but I experienced no return. The best candidates are probably incompletes as Dr. Young stated.

  7. #7
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    I have found the Brucker Method of biofeedback very effective for neuromuscular retraining. Since I was hurt, it's very apparent that my body is healing.

    It's quite clear to me that with biofeedback...

    1) I complement the effects of my workouts for upregulating neuroplasticity in muscles below my injury. I need to TEACH my brain to innervate redundant nerves rather than the ones that it used before I was hurt to trigger to make certain movements happen. Biofeedback gives me the means to SEE when I do this was a minute amount of signal.

    2) This method is allowing me to retrain my healing nerves.

    My experience negates one of the statements made here. With the Brucker method, I do not need voluntary movement of the muscles that I am trying to retrain. In fact, I don't even need voluntary signal to the peripheral nerves.

    If there is no apparent voluntary signal, Brucker begins his sessions by triggering the reflex arc and having the patient try and sustain the reflex. He does this by lengthening the muscle which causes an electropotential which goes to the spine and back again. The patient watches on the monitor and tries to maintain this signal. In doing this, the patients gradually regain the ability to maintain the reflex, and then learn to make the signal voluntary.

    I can see my brain attempting to fire my muscles with 100th the signal necessary to make them move. As time goes on and I keep working at it, this signal improves, albeit slowly.

    I can attest to the positive results of this program.

    At the time I was hurt, my injury was complete at T5 (nothing getting through the injury site, NOT ASIA A) Now I have visible abominal contraction, working paraspinals, and observable hip flexion. I can get voluntary signal to my quads consistently.

    Michael Utley has also benefitted from this program. This former Detroit Lion was quadraplegic. He now looks more like a paraplegic than a quad. He can take steps with one KAFO and one AFO brace.

    What did I gain from biofeedback besides recovering the use of lost muscles? I learned that recovery is an active process. Knowing about the spine and current research is not enough. Biofeedback has given me a method of measuring very minute improvements. After my second treatment I was able to leave Dr. Brucker's lab and say...I am recovering.

    Regarding the pianist which benefitted so greatly from this program...did Dr. Brucker ever do biofeedback sessions in which he trained the individual to lift a fork and spoon? I seems likely to me that such a talent was the drive for this miraculous recovery, which was motivated by biofeedback. I don't think that one particular case of recovery is enough to make the assumption that what is relearned is functionally specific.

    Brucker's assistants apply the therapy which was his own invention, and work on the science itself. Many of the people that work with him have their English as a second language. There is likely more of a problem in communication, than there is with the disciplines which he applies.

    I am confident that as the number of biological options which we have increases, biofeedback is going to play an essential role in neuromusclar retraining.

    The Brucker program in south Florida is now at Miami Jewish Home and Hospital for the aged, and is no longer at the University of Miami. It is not affiliated with the Miami Project. Brucker treats people, not mice.

    May God give you patience, and your desire drive you to act

    Eric Texley

    [This message was edited by Eric Texley on 08-31-03 at 03:30 PM.]

    [This message was edited by Eric Texley on 08-31-03 at 03:31 PM.]

    [This message was edited by Eric Texley on 08-31-03 at 03:32 PM.]

    [This message was edited by Eric Texley on 08-31-03 at 03:36 PM.]

  8. #8
    Senior Member Norm's Avatar
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    Has anyone asked why Brucker was NEVER a part of The Miami Project??? If Bio worked that great he should be on the board of Directors and people should be jumping out of their wheelchairs. Well I was told by Project Members "we don't believe in it". I didn't want to believe them then, but I do now, after years of money, I'm glad insurance paid for it. Most of the people getting recoverery would have got it anyway by just trying too exercise.

    This is my take on it, and if you have money to burn go for it.

    Mike Utley is very incomple, and may have gotten that return anyway.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Norm's Avatar
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    I will add that the only Person from the MP that gave Brucker a shot was Dr. Barth Green, and that was through the University of Miami not the MP.

    But now why is Brucker no longer even at the University of Miami?

  10. #10
    Banned Faye's Avatar
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    Thank you Eric.
    Let me add that Jason too has benefited from neuro-muscular retraining. It is also available in Orlando and Jacksonville. Jason (quadriplegic) was extremely frustrated with the minimal results of regular physical therapy. Yet with the bio-feedback he seemed to make gains at practically every session, which was very encouraging to him.

    I cannot for sure say that it translated in more functional movement, but maybe it was more than coincidental that Jason finally was able to walk in his walker a few steps by himself. This was after three years of paralysis.
    He had a lot of extensor tone which was hard to break in order to bend and lift the knee. Dr Brucker's team worked on separation to eliminate co-contracture in Jason's case.

    Jason took independent steps using a walker for
    two years. However due to growth, disuse and loss of useful spasticity for weightbearing, he lost that ability about a year ago. This was very depressing. Recently we have had to start from scratch again with bio-feedback: this time to learn to stretch the knee. ( spasticity/extensor tone is no longer holding the knee straight).

    We found out Jason has only about 25% of normal signal to the right leg and about 18% of normal to the left leg.
    According to Dr. Brucker you need 40% of normal signal to the legs, in order to walk.

    We have been told it is a long road ahead, when patients lose their spasticity thru baclofen, rhizotomy or botox. They have never seen any patient lose their spasticity without any of these drastic measures. So Jason's change is very unusual.
    Obviously Jason and I are not happy with this functional loss and the long road ahead, all over again. We feel biofeedback will help show us we are heading in the right direction with the exercises Jason does.

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