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Thread: Restorative therapy -It's time to heal

  1. #1

    Restorative therapy -It's time to heal

    Hi, my name is Josh Basile. I am 20 years old and a C4-5 complete quadriplegic. I broke my neck August 1, 2004 while on a family vacation at the beach.

    Many of you might have heard of restorative therapy (activity based therapy) because of Christopher Reeve. Right now I am at the Kennedy Krieger Institute under the care of Christopher Reeve's neurologist Dr. John McDonald. Dr. McDonald believes through restorative therapy one can reeducate the spinal cord to function as it once did. Voluntary muscle movement can be achieved through daily functional electro stimulation of muscles below the injured area of the spinal cord. It doesn't happen immediately but with time the spinal cord can repair itself.

    Ever since I started restorative therapy, I have regained more movement below my injured area than other doctors said was possible. Dr. McDonald's view on recovery is based on reeducating the spinal cord through repetitive exercise below the injured area. I ride a bicycle with my own muscles because of electrodes (pads that let electrical current pass through into the muscles) placed on my quads, hamstrings, and glutes which are the muscles on top of the thighs, the back of the legs, and the butt muscles. This bicycle machine is hooked up to computerized software that stimulates my muscles to move my legs as if I were pedaling the bicycle. I ride over 12 miles a day. It reduces my spasticity, increases blood flow, increases muscle mass, increases range of motion, and helps to prevent decubitus ulcers (pressure sores). When I am on the bike my breathing increases and I feel like I am getting a cardiovascular workout. I feel healthier after riding and my legs rarely spasm the night of a workout.

    You might ask yourself: how does this bike reeducate the spinal cord? When you are riding the bike, electrode pads are placed on specific muscles. The muscles are stimulated to move your legs as if you are riding a bike. As your legs are pedaling your muscles are sending signals up the spinal cord trying to tell the brain that you are riding a bike. At the same moment your brain is sending signals down the spinal cord acknowledging that you are riding the bike. The problem is that your spinal cord was damaged and signals that once traveled freely no longer understand how to get through the injured area. The two signals are trying to communicate with each other. The repetitive activity below and above one's injury stimulates the nervous system to become more functional and to promote nerve cell growth.

    There are two bikes that I’ve used at Kennedy Krieger. The first was the ERGYS2 bike, but when the RT300 bike came out, I started using that because I could just wheel up to it in my wheelchair without having to be transferred. I have never liked being transferred (I’m six feet tall and it usually takes two people), and I know that those on a ventilator like it even less.

    Dr. McDonald through an MRI study was able to prove that one only needs 10% of their spinal cord intact in order to fully function. This tells us that we don't need to replenish 100% of our spinal cord. All we really need to do is reeducate a small portion of the injured spinal cord in order to fully function again.

    Pat Rummerfield is the human that Dr. McDonald's did the studies on. In 1970, Pat was in a car accident and broke his neck in four different vertebrae. It took him 17 years but he fully recovered and ended up running an Ironman triathlon and a marathon in Antarctica. I've been privileged to become friends with Pat. He called me up one day and shared his story and all of the information that I'm providing for you today. After speaking with him I was filled with hope.

    Hope is what has motivated me to seek out the best treatments and to help others who are in need. Since my injury, I have come to understand that with the right attitude, motivation, and hope --- anything is possible. Time and patience are two things that are required for healing.

    I now dedicate my life to helping others. I have started a foundation, Determined2Heal, that helps provide information to those newly injured to simplify the transition into a life with paralysis.

    A month and a half after starting restorative therapy at Kennedy Krieger I began moving my right toe and contracting many of the muscles in my right leg. A week ago I began wiggling my left toe and contracting muscles in my left leg. I've increased muscle mass throughout my body. I've not had any health-related issues since starting restorative therapy.

    If you want to learn more about restorative therapy and the program that Dr. McDonald is running at Kennedy Krieger check it out: (restorative therapy helps those with spinal cord injury, stroke, cerebral palsy, spina bifida, and many other nerve related illnesses) Kennedy Krieger is located at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, Maryland. They have both inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation.

    http://www.kennedykrieger.org/kki_cp.jsp?pid=4241

    If you want to learn more about Functional Electro Stimulation bicycles:

    RT300

    http://www.restorative-therapies.com/All%20products/rt300/rt300.htm

    ERGYS2

    http://www.musclepower.com/poym2.htm

    If you want to learn more about me, Josh Basile, you can read my story which made the front page of the Washington Post. Many newly injured patients and their families have told me that the article helped and inspired them:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/07/03/AR2005070300881_pf.html

    http://www.determined2heal.org/aboutjosh.htm

    I have a foundation called Determined2heal. The web site is under construction but my foundation's goal is to provide an informational care package to those that are newly injured to help simplify the transition into a life with paralysis.

    http://www.determined2heal.org/

    If you want to learn more about Patrick Rummerfield:

    http://www.neuro.wustl.edu/sci/ironman.htm

    Patrick Rummerfield's foundation:

    http://www.next-steps.org/home.htm


  2. #2
    Josh, thank you very much for posting. Wise.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Josh, You are in great hands with Dr. McDonald. Thanks for all the information.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    Josh,
    Thanks for sharing your journey! Do you still have regular laser treatments?

    Dr. Young,
    Has there been any additional research published on Laser treatments from Bethesda? Anything realted to chronic injuries?

  5. #5

    $$$$$$$$$$$$$$

    the rt-300 costs over 15,000 dollars. what happened to makeing it
    cost effective for the average person to use. it won't help us at
    home if we can't afford it.

  6. #6
    TheMom, I recently had the pleasure of having Juanita Anderson from the Uniformed Services University in Bethesda attending our spinal cord injury workshop at Rutgers. She is doing laser therapies and will be testing them on contused rat spinal cords. I am looking forward to the results of her experiments. Wise.

    Quote Originally Posted by The mom
    Josh,
    Thanks for sharing your journey! Do you still have regular laser treatments?

    Dr. Young,
    Has there been any additional research published on Laser treatments from Bethesda? Anything realted to chronic injuries?

  7. #7

    Can't put a price on healing

    I do understand that the RT300 is expensive. I have a friend at Kennedy Krieger that just got insurance to pay for it. State technology assistance projects could also help pay for it. The American Association of Disabled People can hook you up with Access Loans or Assistive Technology loans. I think Bank of America also has these loans at low interest rates. As a last resort, a personal fundraiser might work.

    If you can't get approval or funding, encourage your rehab center to pursue Restorative Therapy and Functional Electric Stimulation Bikes.

    For those who can afford it, it is a great thing to have in your home because you don't have to travel to and from a rehab center and you can fit your rehab into your schedule rather than rehab controlling your life. You can do more with your life if you don't have to spend that extra time in the car. Before I was travelling 2 1/2 hours a day from DC to Baltimore. I prefer to spend that 2 1/2 hours in class, with friends, or just relaxing. Gas costs a lot right now, too.

    I just got one in my home. The bike is really small and it's really simple to set up. All you have to do is press go because RTI comes out and sets it up and trains you to use it. Shipping, installation and training are included in the price, which is under $15,000.

    I hope cost won't prevent you from seeing if this is right for you. Email me at determined2heal@aol.com if you need fundraising ideas - I have a lot. Josh Basile

  8. #8

    Determined2heal

    IF MY INSURANCE WON'T BUY IT--IT WON'T

    IF I DON'T HAVE MONEY--I DON'T

    IF I CAN'T GET A LOAN---I CAN'T

    THENNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN

    HOW ABOUT U BUY ON FOR ME---------MR. MONEY MAN
    OR
    HOW ABOUT U GET A LOAN FOR ME

    BOTTOM LINE----------TOOOOOOOOOOOOO EXPENSIVE

    PLEASE DON'T SAY WHAT ALL U WENT THROUGH TO GET IT---
    HEARD IT ALL BEFORE . U HAD THE MONEY.

    LOOK--IF WE COULD--WE WOULD

    I'M GLAD U HAVE ONE--YOU'RE BLESSED

    BTW----DO U WORK FOR THEM???????


    THANKS FOR TRYING TO HELP.







  9. #9
    Senior Member Norm's Avatar
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    Isn't there more to it than riding the FES bike? I was going to head up there maybe in the spring. But I can do FES 10 min from my home.

  10. #10
    Senior Member cementhead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by determined2heal
    I do understand that the RT300 is expensive. I have a friend at Kennedy Krieger that just got insurance to pay for it. State technology assistance projects could also help pay for it. The American Association of Disabled People can hook you up with Access Loans or Assistive Technology loans. I think Bank of America also has these loans at low interest rates. As a last resort, a personal fundraiser might work.

    If you can't get approval or funding, encourage your rehab center to pursue Restorative Therapy and Functional Electric Stimulation Bikes.

    For those who can afford it, it is a great thing to have in your home because you don't have to travel to and from a rehab center and you can fit your rehab into your schedule rather than rehab controlling your life. You can do more with your life if you don't have to spend that extra time in the car. Before I was travelling 2 1/2 hours a day from DC to Baltimore. I prefer to spend that 2 1/2 hours in class, with friends, or just relaxing. Gas costs a lot right now, too.

    I just got one in my home. The bike is really small and it's really simple to set up. All you have to do is press go because RTI comes out and sets it up and trains you to use it. Shipping, installation and training are included in the price, which is under $15,000.

    I hope cost won't prevent you from seeing if this is right for you. Email me at determined2heal@aol.com if you need fundraising ideas - I have a lot. Josh Basile
    Determined,have your friend copy their letter of medical nessecity and I will submit to my insurance.Can't hurt to try

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