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Thread: C1/C2 injury--correct diagnosis?

  1. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Katja View Post
    It's an idea, although she would not be able to keep it in her mouth for long. Thanks, though!
    Last edited by SCI-Nurse; 07-16-2012 at 08:51 PM.

  2. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Jaysne View Post
    It's an idea, although she would not be able to keep it in her mouth for long. Thanks, though!
    Why? Lots of people use mouth sticks for computer use, typing, reading, etc. for long periods of time. It does take some working up to that, as it requires strength in her neck and jaw muscles.

    Has she not had the opportunity to work with a SCI specialty physiatrist and OT?

    (KLD)

  3. #13
    She'd be lying on her back doing this, and she doesn't have the range, energy, or dexterity to use a mouth stick. Plus, knowing her, she'd think it would make her look silly and even more helpless than she is already.

    No, she hasn't worked with a SCI specialty physiatrist. What is that?

  4. #14
    A physiatrist (fizz-EYE-a-trist or fizzy-AT-rist) is a physician who is board certified in PM&R (Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation). Some also specialize in SCI and may be board certified in Spinal Cord Medicine. These physicians are experts in the recovery and rehabilitation process for injuries like this.

    (KLD)

  5. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by SCI-Nurse View Post
    A physiatrist (fizz-EYE-a-trist or fizzy-AT-rist) is a physician who is board certified in PM&R (Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation). Some also specialize in SCI and may be board certified in Spinal Cord Medicine. These physicians are experts in the recovery and rehabilitation process for injuries like this.

    (KLD)
    Thanks for the info, SCI-Nurse! Jim

  6. #16

    Trying to get her some independence

    I wrote about my mom a few months ago, who is 83. She fell two years ago and fractured her C1 and C2 vertebrae. She also has a compression of her C7 disc, which has caused her hands and fingers to clench up and she can't uncurl them.

    Thus she has very limited use of her hands and fingers. She can't hold a book or turn the pages, nor can she dial a phone. She is able to, on a very limited basis, hold a fork and use it to eat, and also pick up a glass and drink--but imagine doing so while wearing very thick mittens--that's what it's like for her. She has been getting PT and massage therapy on her upper body, arms, and hands but we haven't seen any breakthroughs. Recently she had to go into rehab for a few days and began crying because, "I can't even comb my hair!"

    She also has congestive heart failure, which means she spends a lot of time on her back in bed, resting or sleeping. She does get up for three meals a day, and is able to walk, with assistance from my dad, around the house. They go out in the car once or twice a day for rides of up to an hour each.

    The bottom line here is that she can't do anything by herself. She is basically helpless. She needs assistance in everything except sleeping.

    I can't imagine how awful this must be for her. Every now and then she will roll over and sit on the edge of the bed. Of course, she can't move from there or she'll fall down.

    I've been trying to come up with something she can do by herself, for herself. It seems to me that if she even a little independence, it would mean a great deal to her. Just something she could do by herself. The only thing she does now by herself is press a button that activates a bell that alerts my dad to come and take her to the bathroom.

    Does anyone have any ideas? Thanks.

  7. #17
    Dear Jaysne,
    I am so sorry to hear about your mother's disability. The best person to assess what she can and can't do for herself is an occupational therapist. There are some adaptive devices that people can use for activities of daily living without having the best fine motor movements. It is important fro your mother to have some quality of life. I hope the OT or a recreational therapist can assess your mother for activities that will bring her some joy. What about books on tape, or an IPad with a stylis that she could use with an adaptive brace? She may need some training and some support to make this happen.

    I hope she is comfortable and her pain is well controlled. This is a disability that will take some getting used to and with her being 83 years old her previous coping skills will affect her current coping skills. You as her daughter may need some help in coping with your mother's condition/disability. Once the assessment is complete it is important to accept what you mother can and can't do and be supportive.

    I wish you the best and to seek support for your mother's disability and for you and your father as her caregivers.

    pbr

  8. #18
    Dear friends,

    My mom--who I wrote about in this thread--passed away last week, on Oct. 8. Despite all of her afflictions: congenital heart failure and spinal nerve damage, she never complained and always was easy to give me a smile and a light in her beautiful blue eyes. She suffered these maladies for about three years.

    Thank you for everyone's ideas here. I saw her two weeks ago and gave her a mechanical arm with which to hold an iPad so that she could read while lying bed. She never got to use it. I miss her very much and will always treasure the fact that she was my mom and that I was able to know her for so long. She stood for so much good in the world that people seem to have forgotten about. Thanks again to you all.

  9. #19
    Jaysne, my sincerest sympathies. I'm sure she appreciated your efforts more than you know. Take care.

  10. #20
    Jaysne, I'm so sorry for your loss.

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