At Inspire Neurocare, our highly experienced team support people who have experienced brain injury, spinal cord injury and stroke.
Understanding sudden onset conditions: Brain injury
Traumatic brain injuries are caused by localised and sudden damage to the brain, often resulting from a road traffic accident, a fall, assault or incidents related to work or sport.
Acquired brain injury (ABI) describes damage that occurred since birth. ABI can be both traumatic and non-traumatic, such as those occurring due to a brain tumour, stroke, anoxic brain injury (following a myocardial infarction) or encephalitis.
Each year in England, around 2,770 people require a period of neurorehabilitation following a brain injury. Initial recovery often takes place within the first six months, usually in acute hospitals. Following this, many people require neurological rehabilitation to re-learn the skills of independent living, with slower stream rehabilitation in the community.
The life-changing impact of brain injury
When it comes to brain injury, people can experience a range of symptoms which can significantly affect their lives. In the majority of cases, the more severe the brain injury, the more severe the long-term impact is likely to be. Some people experience complex problems which can affect their mobility, understanding, personality, behaviour, emotions and close relationships. People may experience significant fatigue and memory loss.
Every brain injury is different, and people have differing requirements for neurorehabilitation and different goals. Inspire Neurocare's interdisciplinary approach ensures that rehabilitation is developed around the individual.
Our physiotherapy teams work with people to increase their mobility and strength, reduce the risk of falls and reduce the impact of muscle spasms with stretching exercises. Many people who have had a brain injury also experience muscular-skeletal damage, which requires specific exercises. Posture is crucial for good recovery and so this forms part of many neurorehabilitation approaches following a brain injury.
Occupational therapists aim to increase people's independence in areas of everyday living, ensuring people can function in their environment with adaptations where required. This might include working with people on the skills necessary to make a cup of tea, manage a budget, cook a meal and manage their personal care.
Speech and Language therapists can support people who experience swallowing difficulties and communications issues following a brain injury. This might include communication aids and adaptive equipment.
Neuropsychologists work with individuals to manage anxiety, depression and behavioural disturbances which can be expected following a brain injury.
Understanding sudden onset conditions: Spinal injury
Every year in England, 2,500 people experience a life-changing spinal injury. Spinal cord injury can result from a traumatic injury which dislocates or damages the vertebrae. Some people experience spinal cord injury following a tumour or as a result of transverse myelitis.
Incomplete spinal cord injuries ref to partial damage of the spinal cord. This can mean that one side of the body is more affected than the other. Some people retain some sensation and movement below the level of the injury. A complete spinal cord injury results in no sensory or motor function below the level of the injury.
Following a spinal injury, many people undergo intensive rehabilitation in a specialist spinal injury hospital, such as the Midland Centre for Spinal Injuries at the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust in Oswestry. Inspire Neurocare is well-placed to provide longer-term neurorehabilitation for spinal cord injury following a period of acute care.
The life-changing impact of spinal injury
For people who have experienced a spinal injury, there is often a significant adjustment to the life-changing impact of becoming a wheelchair user.
Many people live with pain and fatigue and may experience other physical complications such as sexual dysfunction and bladder and bowel issues. For some people, rehabilitation is not only focussed on physical recovery but also encompasses support from neuropsychologists and psychiatrists to come to terms with a different way of life.
Inspire Neurocare's physiotherapy team work with individuals to restore as much mobility as possible following injury to the spinal cord. This includes exercises to strengthen muscles and improve balance and mobility, transferring to and from aa wheelchair and gait training.
Occupational therapy activities might including assessing equipment requirements, managing wheelchairs and walking aids in the community and positioning for bed or seating.
Understanding sudden onset conditions: Stroke
Every year in the UK, 100,000 people suffer a stroke. Some people are left with minor complications, and others experience life-changing disabilities.
There are three main types of stroke:
The life-changing impact of stroke
People can experience physical disabilities, including weakness, stiffness and spasms, which affect their ability to walk and cause issues with activities of daily living. Over 1/3 of stroke survivors experience communication difficulties, including difficulties in speaking, understanding and communicating. Fatigue can also have a significant impact on people's recovery and rehabilitation.
Following a stroke, Inspire Neurocare's physiotherapy team work with individuals to improve their mobilisation, balance and strength with exercises, and with stretching reduce stiffness and spasms. For people who experience weakness on one side of the body, the team use exercises to rebuild their strength and reduce the associated weakness.
The Occupational Therapy team work with individuals to re-learn the skills of every day living and ensure any adaptations required are identified and put into place.
For those people who experience communication and swallowing difficulties after a stroke, the speech and language team can provide support to reduce the risk of choking, and provide communication aids to aid interaction.
Inspire Neurocare's neuropsychologists work with individuals to manage the emotional upheaval to people's lives which can result following a stroke.
Supporting people to regain independence and learn new skills
Following a sudden brain or spinal injury, neurorehabilitation, care and support is centred around re-ablement so people can live with more independence. Re-learning the skills of everyday living and developing new ways of compensating for the lost function is one essential part of this approach.
Our interdisciplinary team of therapists includes speech and language therapists, physiotherapists and occupational therapists who develop personal rehabilitation plans which allow people to set personal goals which are most relevant to their lives. These teams are supported by our Life Skills Facilitators, who continue therapeutic interventions following sessions and the Wellbeing and Lifestyle Coordinators, who ensure that people are supported to live their lives as they choose
For one person, it might be imperative to learn how to climb stairs. For others, making a cup of tea or a simple meal might be a good outcome. The therapy team will work together to reach whatever goals are selected.
Make a referral or arrange a visit to Inspire Neurocare
At Inspire Neurocare, we work very closely with the individual, family members, the referring team and any current care providers to ensure a positive transition to our service. Please contact us to arrange a virtual tour or to discuss a referral or admission:
Inspire Neurocare Worcester has been given a glowing report by the Care Quality Commission, who praised the service for treating residents with dignity and respect.
Two Physiotherapy Students have joined the Inspire Neurocare team for a two-month placement at the specialist neurorehabilitation service.