H came to Inspire Neurocare for an intensive period of neuro rehabilitation following a life-changing neurological disorder
With the aim of maximising his opportunity for rehabilitation before moving home, H has made an incredible recovery with just 12 weeks of neurorehabilitation, going from being unable to walk to managing stairs and returning home to live independently.
Previously fit and active, H became unwell at home in late 2022 and was treated in hospital for Central pontine myelinolysis and thalamic infarcts.
Central pontine myelinolysis (CPM) is a rare neurological disorder that occurs when the nerve fibres in the brainstem are damaged, causing significant damage to the body's function. Like many neurological conditions, CPM can affect movement, strength, coordination, sensation, and autonomic functions such as breathing and heart rate. Thalamic infarcts, a type of stroke which are usually caused by blockages in the blood vessels that supply the thalamus, can cause a range of motor and sensory symptoms such as paralysis, weakness, numbness, and speech problems.
Whilst being treating in intensive care, H had respiratory distress and had a tracheostomy and a PEG inserted to provide nutrition and hydration. His movement and communication was severely restricted as a result of his illness.
H explains, "At one point, I couldn't lift any limbs, I could just about blink. And that's how I said yes or no by blinking. I stopped speaking for three months - whatever I said people couldn't hear me."
When H was medically stable, he was transferred to Mosely Hall Hospital before coming to Inspire's neurorehabilitation unit in Worcester in November 2022. "The Mosely staff said, ‘Don't worry about anything, you'll fit in just right at Inspire'. I got to know everyone within days. It's the warmth really, they're welcoming here."
On admission as part of the Rehabilitation Pathway, H was further assessed by Inspire's interdisciplinary team comprising of an Occupational Therapist, a Physiotherapist and Speech & Language Therapist. This assessment highlighted H's physical and cognitive deficits which became the basis of his rehabilitation plan.
When H first came to Inspire, he was primarily wheelchair dependent and required the help of two Life Skills Facilitators (our name for rehabilitation assistants) to manage his activities of daily living and transfer to and from his wheelchair. Agreeing a series of rehabilitation goals together with the clinical and therapy teams, H began to progress along his rehabilitation plan with support from every therapeutic discipline.
Therapy included Speech and Language Therapy to improve his communication and strengthen his palate, allowing H to speak more clearly. "I used to speak through my nose when I got tired. My palate used to get relaxed and floppy, but because I've been doing a lot of what Lyne (Speech & Language Therapist) has taught me, it's been a lot better."
Whilst at Inspire, H has made significant progress with his physical strength, mobility, and speech. H has progressed in terms of intendent living with Occupational Therapy, going from needing full support for personal care and activities of daily living to managing most of his care himself.
H explains, "Before, I couldn't lift my right hand above my chest - but now can wash my hair - I can do everything. Being able to go to the kitchen, make a cup of tea, make breakfast - I don't rely on other people to do things for me. It's helped me in a big way. It's not like a hospital here - you've got your own privacy, your own room of course - everyone treats you so differently - as you should be treated - like an adult."
A specialist neurological physiotherapy programme was designed with H with the aim of improving his movement, balance, and coordination. H's right arm was mostly affected by the weakness initially, so therapy included tasks to use his left and right hand together and separately. H became ambidextrous during his rehabilitation, which included upper limb strengthening using both hands.
Physiotherapy sessions involved a programme of lower limb strengthening, practising sit to stand transfers, and improving his balance with the aim of relearning to walk. Going on to practice stepping and walking with a frame in the gym, H began to walk around the rehabilitation unit with support from the physiotherapists, occupational therapists and Life Skills Facilitators throughout the service. With practice and determination, H began walking more independently and increased his confidence.
"They're really good here, they really are. They do push you. I know I'm not 100% there yet, but going from the walking frame to crutches is a big change."
H's motivation and determination, combined with the expertise of the teams at Inspire Neurocare, have enabled H to progress well in his neurorehabilitation. This has been achieved through a combination of hard work and adapting daily routines to maximise independent living skills and ultimately meet H's goal to move back home.
Michelle Kudhail, Director of Specialist Services, said "His initial goal - to be walking - H has exceed this. To be able to walk is often a goal that people have - it's usually the first thing people want to achieve when they come into a neurorehabilitation service. We always set goals that we hope people can reach, and we want to see them succeed. To see H manage the stairs and go home walking independently within just 12 weeks is so significant. Considering the level of disability he had initially, the recovery he's achieved is really significant."
H said, "In 100 days - three months - from going from nothing to being able to do the majority of things, it's a great achievement. I couldn't ask for anymore - I just hope the outside world will be as nice as these people. I will miss this place in a big way, but I'll be glad just to go home."
Looking for private neurorehabilitation UK? Inspire Neurocare is a highly specialist neuro rehabilitation unit based in Worcester.
Providing complex care and rehabilitation for adults aged 18-65+ with a neurological diagnosis including stroke, multiple sclerosis, motor neurone disease, traumatic brain injury, acquired brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, orthopaedic impairments, and neurological conditions, Inspire's outcome-focused approach supports people in making tangible progress towards their rehabilitation goals.
With clinical, therapeutic and care colleagues from many disciplines working together to build an individualised programme of care and rehabilitation services for each person, Inspire's approach is designed to achieve the best outcomes for each person.
For more information about Inspire Neurocare and to learn more about our admission and referral process, please contact us. You can find more information about Inspire Neurocare and our services by exploring our website.
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