Saturday, April 18, 2015

Saturday News

Contents of This Week Saturday News April 18th, 2015:

       Expressive aphasia (non-fluent aphasia) is characterized by the loss of the ability to produce language (spoken or written). It is one subset of a larger family of disorders known collectively as aphasia. Expressive aphasia differs from dysarthria, which is typified by a patient's inability to properly move the muscles of the tongue and mouth to produce speech. Expressive aphasia also differs from apraxia of speech which is a motor disorder characterized by an inability to create and sequence motor plans for speech. A longer definition comes from Wikipedia.
  • Headline Video - Expressive Aphasia:
    • My Expressive Aphasia Experience
    • My Expressive Aphasia Experience 2
    • Expressive Aphasia - Sarah Scott - Teenage Stroke Survivor
    • Sarah Scott - Aphasia - 5 Years after a Stroke at 18
    • Sarah Scott - Intensive Aphasia Therapy
    • NeuroLogic Exam: Mental Status-AbNormal: Expressive Language
    • Broca's area vs. Wernicke's area - VCE Psychology
    • Language: Broca and Wernicke's Areas
    • Mark's 22 Years-Old Stroke: Broca's Aphasia
    • Grace: Stroke survivor with Broca's aphasia, 5 weeks after stroke
    • Broca's Area Tan's Brain
    • Circulation System of the Broca's Area, and its Relationship With Acute Broca's Aphasia
    • Broca's Aphasia
    • Broca
  • Future Topics in SSTattler:
Saturday NewsFuture Topic
Assistive Technology
2015 Neuro Film Festival
Treadmill Desk
Receptive Aphasia (or Wernicke or Fluent)

Definition: Expressive Aphasia (Non-Fluent Speech)

Expressive Aphasia From Wikipedia,
      the free encyclopedia

Expressive aphasia (non-fluent aphasia) is characterized by the loss of the ability to produce language (spoken or written). It is one subset of a larger family of disorders known collectively as aphasia. Expressive aphasia differs from dysarthria, which is typified by a patient's inability to properly move the muscles of the tongue and mouth to produce speech. Expressive aphasia also differs from apraxia of speech which is a motor disorder characterized by an inability to create and sequence motor plans for speech. Comprehension is typically only mildly to moderately impaired in expressive aphasia. This contrasts with receptive aphasia, which is distinguished by a patient's inability to comprehend language or speak with appropriately meaningful words. Expressive aphasia is also known as Broca's aphasia in clinical neuropsychology and agrammatic aphasia in cognitive neuropsychology and is caused by acquired damage to the anterior regions of the brain, including (but not limited to) the left posterior inferior frontal gyrus or inferior frontal operculum, also described as Broca's area (Brodmann area 44 and Brodmann area 45) Expressive aphasia is also a symptom of some migraine attacks.


Video: Expressive Aphasia (Non-Fluent Speech)

My Expressive Aphasia Experience
Published on Jan 2, 2013

SSTattler: She has "atypical migraine/seizure" not exactly a "stroke" but close enough for this week...

I have expressive aphasia caused by an atypical migraine on Friday, Dec. 28, 2012 that also caused a seizure. This is my story (at least the beginning of it). Special thanks to my husband for filming and to Sarah Scott of England for being so brave through her trials and inspiring me to be brave. Filmed on Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2012.

Standard YouTube License @ patchwurkgurl

Headline Blogging: Expressive Aphasia

Definition: Blogging (verb). Add new material to or regularly update a blog. (Origin 1990s: blog shortening of weblog)

Scrambled Mantras

Grace Carpenter
My Happy Stroke
Friday, October 14, 2011

A lot of people have urged me to meditate, especially to help with my insomnia. Sometimes I try, but it's hard. Often I just concentrate on my breathing. Usually that helps.

One person suggested to me meditating on the mantra, "I am at peace." But let's be realistic:  I'm not at peace. I'm a skeptic who doesn't like wishful thinking.

I was talking to a friend about meditation, who empathized. She told me she sometimes meditates on the simple phrase, "I am here." As the friend said, there's isn't much to argue about there. I thought maybe I should try it myself. I sat on the floor and closed my eyes.

"Here I am," I said in my head.

Every so often I forget I have aphasia. Until I actually try to say something, even in my head. I tried it again:

"Here am I."

Did I tell you that short phrases are the most difficult ones for many people who have aphasia, including me?

"Am I here."

Maybe I'll just go back to breathing.

See the original article:

People with Aphasia Should Reset the Bar

Rebecca Dutton
Home After a Stroke
April 3, 2013

Since my stroke I have struggled to find the right word and utter coherent sentences when I'm stressed, barely awake, and tired at night.  A daily calendar called "The Stupidest Things Ever Said" makes me feel better about using the wrong word and saying sentences that don't make sense. The fact that Steve Jobs practiced for ten hours before he made a ten minute speech at an Apple computer convention is more believable after reading the examples below.  When I get embarassed about my ability to speak I try to remind myself to be more realistic.
"I will perish it forever."   Johnny Logan accepting a award 
"He has to start a little bit better than he has already begun."   sportscaster David Pleat 
 "The wind won't make it easier, but it will make it less difficult."   golf commentator Bernard Gallacher

See the original article:

Aphasia Basics

Jeff Porter
Stroke of Faith
Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Traditionally, in the United States, June is, among other things, Aphasia Awareness Month.

And those involved have a lot of work to do to generate awareness. I'd be willing to guess - maybe even a small wager - that most people have no idea what aphasia is.

As someone whose stroke floored me - temporarily - with aphasia, I offer this basic information for you to pass along to people you know:
Aphasia is a disorder caused by damage to the parts of the brain that control language. It can make it hard for you to read, write and say what you mean to say. It is most common in adults who have had a stroke. Brain tumors, infections, injuries and dementia can also cause it. The type of problem you have and how bad it is depends on which part of your brain is damaged and how much damage there is. 
There are four main types:
  • Expressive aphasia - you know what you want to say, but you have trouble saying or writing what you mean
  • Receptive aphasia - you hear the voice or see the print, but you can't make sense of the words
  • Anomic aphasia - you have trouble using the correct word for objects, places or events
  • Global aphasia - you can't speak, understand speech, read or write
  • Some people recover from aphasia without treatment. Most, however, need language therapy as soon as possible.
Read the entire article linked above. Lots of other links for good resources about aphasia.

See the original article:

Update - Aphasia,...

Robert & Allison
Allison's Brain
Friday, 7 December 2012

Allison has been home for five weeks since her discharge from the Rehab Centre and has gotten into a solid routine. She has been having two speech therapy outpatient sessions at the Rehab Centre, two music therapy sessions at home, and two fitness sessions with a personal trainer at the YMCA each week. Allison also plays piano, works at Sudoku, does speech and music therapy homework, goes for walks, and has been attending a number of musical performances (Welcome Winter, Bach Christmas Oratorio, Metropolitan Opera broadcasts, Orpheus, etc.). She has also enjoyed musical Sunday afternoons at home with friends. We are hoping for more of these musical Sunday afternoons, as Allison’s music therapist says that music, music and music are all important to Allison’s recovery!

Eclectic Stuff

Definition: Eclectic(noun) a person who derives ideas, style, or taste from a broad and diverse range of sources.

Speech Markers of Alzheimer's Disease Progression

Bill Yates
Brain Posts
Posted 1st November 2013

Sensitive, reliable and inexpensive markers of disease progression in Alzheimer's disease are needed.

It is known that language and speech domains are impaired with Alzeimer's disease.

What is not known is whether speech performance can be used in the diagnosis and monitoring of progression in Alzheimer's disease (AD).

A recent case series published in the journal Brain supports the potential for expanded use of speech assessment in AD.

Ahmed and colleagues reported their findings in a group of 15 patients.  All patients had been assessed longitudinally, died during the course of follow up and had post-mortem confirmation of AD.

Subjects completed a comprehensive battery of neuropsychological assessments during their period of observation.

Let It Bleed

Tim Seefeldt
Brain Food Cafe for the Mind
Posted April 5, 2015

This was a week of bad news.

I can’t get into what it was exactly. But it was that gut-wrenching stuff that first has you slip into denial, then into bargaining with higher powers, then finally, grudgingly and painfully into acceptance.

And, hopefully, into the kind of acceptance that comes with action. What I can do in this case can only help emotionally, it can’t specifically impact things one way or another, but still…

I want to write about the bad news. I did, actually, and then destroyed it because I can’t put it out there without betraying a confidence.

My mind is a fog and I can’t focus on my original plan for this week’s blog. Wasn’t it Ernest Hemmingway who wrote something like; “Writing is easy, you just sit down at the typewriter and bleed”?

So, I’ll follow Papa’s lead, and the Rolling Stone’s, too, and Let it Bleed.

When my mind was made mush five years ago by the stroke, it was devastating and almost too much to comprehend. Especially given that I was trying to comprehend using a faulty melon. But at least I could do something about it. Being faced now with circumstances that I can’t take direct action on is having a sizzling impact on my noggin.

It would be fascinating if it wasn’t so frustrating.

Stimulating Speaking is Like Making Hard Boiled Eggs: Aphasia Speech

Mark A. Ittleman
Teaching of Talking
Published on Apr 8, 2015

In this very interesting video Mark compares speech and language stimulation at home or in the clinic with the making of hard boiled eggs. View on! Please visit us at where you can receive some free gifts including a speech screening test where you can learn the inside building blocks of speaking and begin to understand the process of speaking if you are a loved one or care-giver. If you are a speech language pathologist you can learn a great method of stimulating speech and language with children and adults that may give you a reprieve from technology, prepared work sheets, and speech notebook "homework."

We concentrate on speaking and that is the focus of what I shall teach you in the Come and visit!

Standard YouTube License @ Mark Ittleman

Moshe Mark Ittleman, M.S., CCC/SLP
Speech Langage Pathologist
Author Teaching of Talking
Creator:  Teaching of Talking Video Training Course

Amazon Author Central:

Heel Raises (Calf Raises)

Amy Shissler
My Cerebellar Stroke Recovery
April 8, 2015

I tried to explain to someone the importance of this exercise and strengthening this muscle.

This will strengthen the gastrocnemius and soleus muscles, the calf muscles.  These muscles, when contracted, will plantarflex the foot(point the toes).  So when you do this exercise in standing, the only way to point the toes is to lift the body and raise the heels off of the ground.  This exercise looks easy but can be quite hard.  When you do this exercise standing, you’re using small(ish) muscles to lift the weight of the entire body.  You have to work even harder if you’ve got a few extra pounds on you.  You have to work about a million times harder if you had a stroke and the connection from the brain to those muscles is all messed up.  So when you’re walking, at the end of the stance phase of gait, right before toe-off…’s a picture that shows what I’m talking about.……

So when you’re walking, at the end of the stance phase of gait, you have to lift the entire weight of the body with ONE LEG because the other leg has already swung forward.  The legs do opposite things during the gait cycle, they move forward in a reciprocal pattern.  So getting the calves strong, which is responsible for that motion, is vital for walking.

See the original article:

Use Your Hand. Now.

Peter G. Levine
Stronger After Stroke
Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Even if you can't open your “bad” hand, you should use it.

You can release your hand by using the “good” hand to bend the “bad” wrist. This maneuver typically opens the fingers. Once the fingers are open you can use the hand to stabilize, grasp, and even exercise. Grasping objects is, generally speaking, good for the hemiparetic hand. Squeezing objects, as well, is good for the hemiparetic hand.

One way you can quickly get the hand back in the game is using gripping aids. One company that makes a gripping aid that is very easy to use is Active Hands. (Full disclosure, Active Hands a sponsor of this blog).

Using a gripping aid has two immediate benefits after stroke:
1. The “bad” hand can be used to augment your available grip to make gripping safer. The gripping aids would be just that; and aid. As much as you can, use the grasp you have to hold items. But the gripping aid can support your active grasp adding safety and functionality to the grasp.

2. The hand, now “in the game” with the gripping aid, will now use the rest of the arm (shoulder, elbow, forearm rotation). In this way, the rest of the arm is used, which is good for recovery of the rest of the arm. The primary reason for the existence of the arm is to get the hand to where it needs to be, so a (a-HEM!) active hand leads to an active arm. And an active arm is one that is likely to recover.

See the original article:

WARNING: Three Things You Need to Know About Your AFO (Ankle/Foot Orthotic), aka People Fuck Up

Joyce Hoffman
The Tales of a Stroke Patient
Apr 11, 2015

A long time ago, in a land far, far away (I'm kidding--it was New Jersey), a man, called an orthotist, came to Absecon Manor, a nursing home where I was a patient, and huddled with the physical therapists with no input from me. I wanted to know about the options for materials for the brace, the cost, the right to come back for fittings. But they huddled without me.

He fitted me for a brace, wrapping plaster on  my socked leg that acted as the mold. He produced what is known universally as an AFO (pictured left).

I hated the AFO. It was cumbersome, and the man told me, in no uncertain and threatening terms, that I could go nowhere without it. I had to wear a high sock, even in the blazing heat of summer, to cover the plastic of the brace which would irritate my skin if it got stuck to it. At night, I'd take it off, where many times the AFO would go with me for an urgent bathroom trip.

Brace on when I awoke, brace off when I wanted to read stretched out on the sofa, brace on when I wanted a drink from the kitchen, brace off when I wanted to take an hour nap, brace on when I wanted lunch, brace off when I wanted to do my sitting-down exercises, brace on when it was night to close the blinds, brace off.... You do have the pattern, don't you?

50 Shades of Stroke – Mixed Emotions

Sas Freeman
April 13, 2015

As you are already aware I have recently experienced another setback and stay in hospital. Although I’m now home, meds have changed and increased dramatically and many more are tests booked along with a short procedure, although not what I had hoped for hopefully this time we will finally get to the bottom of this situation, therefore turning it into a positive. That said I am still feeling really rather unwell.

This in mind I visited Stanfield Nursing home, not as a resident I’m pleased to report, no disrespect intended here. The reason for my visit was as in my Ambassador role for the Stroke Association to meet Worcester Ukulele Club, who were playing for residents of the nursing home and presenting the Stroke Association with a very generous cheque as they have chosen Stroke as their charity this year. They also told me that one of their members is running the London marathon for the Stroke Association and as if that isn’t tough enough he is carrying his ukulele.

Weekly Columnists

Definition: Columnist |ˈkäləmnist| (noun). A blogger or a journalist contributing regularly to a blog or newspaper.

Musing: Self-Managed Aphasia Therapy
         After Stroke Feasible

Dean Reinke
Deans’ Stroke Musing
Thursday, June 28, 2012

Won't our insurance companies be happy. And Diane from Pink House On The Corner is vindicated in her opinion of SLTs. And we can apply the savings from this to the supposed extra expenses of recovering from aphasia - Self-Managed Aphasia Therapy After Stroke Feasible.

A pilot study carried out in stroke patients with aphasia suggests that self-managed computer therapy is feasible and practical.

"There is growing evidence to suggest that the use of aphasia software can help to improve outcomes in language domains including reading, spelling, and expressive language," write Rebecca Palmer (University of Sheffield, UK) and colleagues.

"However, to date, studies of self-administered word-finding therapy have been limited to descriptive case series with the only reported randomized controlled study for computer use with patients with aphasia focused on reading therapy."

Sunday Stroke Survival: Putting Words in my Mouth

Jo Murphey
The Murphey Saga
Sunday, April 12, 2015

I've mentioned here several times in the past that I have aphasia from my strokes. Actually I have a host of problems that can be linked back to my stroke but this one really bites me in the butt. Mainly because I depended on my ability to speak and write so heavily before my strokes.

I made my living as a minister which is heavy speech. As a writer, words and stringing them together creatively was paramount in importance also. Both are history for the time being. I still remain hopeful that one day I might do those things again.

After my first stroke, I couldn't speak fluently but it was better than not being able to speak at all (like just after my stroke). Conversations with me took on average of five minutes for a couple of sentences. With writing, there were blank parentheses where the appropriate word should go later when I could remember it. It is still how I write this blog today, but the number of lost words and the time it takes to find  a word is less. That's how I could write so many words in my WIP (work in progress, "Don't Get Your Panties in a Wad." I had comprehension, but I couldn't remember the correct word.

Caregiver: Aphasia vs. Dysarthria - Finding The Right Words, Then Saying Them Wrong...

The Pink House On The Corner
Sunday, May 19, 2013

I think the worst thing, at least for me, after the stroke was Bob's inability to speak. I always told myself that it would be easier deal with all of his physical limitations, if only he could speak to me. Tell me what was on his mind. Talk about what he was feeling.

Bob has struggled with speech now for over two years and continues to struggle. But he has come a long way, baby. From his initial grunts and gurgles, to calling everything "window" or "radio", to short phrases such as "I love you" and "Turn it up", to complete sentences that sometimes even make sense. And it seems to me that the aphasia is slowly "clearing" up or at least getting less severe. He does seem to be finally finding "the words"... This while physically he seems to be deteriorating.

Yesterday, he said a complete 11 word sentence, which went like this: "I want to thank you from the heart of my heart." This was after I just cleaned him up from a bowel movement. I swear, my heart soared! Even though I knew he meant "from the bottom of my heart". Still, it's good to hear his voice again.

Then dysarthria rears its ugly head....

Jackie The Jester: Jenny Craig For Men

Jackie Poff
Stroke Survivors Tattler
Risk/reward always works if the right balance is found!

I called the company and ordered their 5-day, 10 lb. weight loss.

The next day, there's a knock on the door and there stands before me a voluptuous, athletic, 19 year old babe dressed in nothing but a pair of Nike running shoes and a sign around her neck. She introduces herself as a representative of the weight loss company. The sign reads, "If you can catch me, you can have me."

Without a second thought, I took off after her. A few miles later huffing and puffing, I finally gave up. The same girl shows up for the next four days and the same thing happens.

On the fifth day, I weighed myself and am delighted to find I lost 10 lbs. as promised. I  called the company and ordered their 5-day/20 pound program.

The next day there's a knock at the door and there stands the most stunning, beautiful, sexy woman I have ever seen in my life. She is wearing nothing but Reebok running shoes and a sign around her neck that reads, "If you catch me you can have me". Well, I'm out the door after her like a shot.

This girl is in excellent shape and I do my best, but no such luck. So for the next four days, the same routine happens and I'm gradually getting in better and better shape. Much to my delight on the fifth day when I weigh myself, I discover that I have lost another 20 lbs. as promised. So I decide to go for broke and called the company to order the 7-day/50 pound program.

"Are  you sure?" asks the representative on. "This is our most rigorous program."

"Absolutely," I reply, "I haven't felt this good in years."

The next day there's a knock at the door; and when I open it find a huge muscular guy standing there wearing nothing but pink running shoes and a sign around his neck that reads, "If I catch you,... you're mine."

I lost 63 pounds that week.

TED Talks - Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly:
         Be Passionate. Be Courageous. Be Your Best.

Published on Apr 11, 2014

SSTattler: Gabby has "Expressive Aphasia"...

On January 8th, 2011, Congresswoman Gabby Giffords was shot in the head while meeting constituents in her home town of Tucson, Arizona. Her husband, the astronaut Mark Kelly, immediately flew to be by her side. In this emotional conversation with the Paley Center's Pat Mitchell, the pair describe their lives both before and after the accident -- and describe their political campaign against gun violence.

Standard YouTube License @ TED

Rick Mercer Report: Rick at the Cardboard Boat Race

Published on Mar 18, 2015

Rick travels to Waterloo, Ontario for the annual Skills Ontario Cardboard Boat Race Championships.

Standard YouTube License @ Rick Mercer Report

Laid-Back Administration:
         Preview Next... v.s. Contents of This Week...

Dr. Beagle C. Cranium
Stroke Survivors Tattler

Preview Next Saturday News
Contents of This Week Saturday News

      I made a few changes on the format for the two weekly articles with a topic (1) "Preview Next Saturday News” on the right-column and (2) "Contents of This Week Saturday News". (This should have been done a long, long time ago):
  • Now there a equivalent between the data contents. There are small difference because (1) display on the “(virtual) paper 8.5 inches x 11 inches” and (2) display on the web SSTattler, but, they are the exactly same data contents.
  • The video list, e.g. from this week is "Video: Expressive Aphasia (Non-Fluent Speech)”, but both (1) and (2) are there same contents. (Before only (1) displayed).
  • Topic Headline Blogging articles, e.g. related this week to "Expressive Aphasia”. The article(s) included right after “Video: Expressive...” and a nice sub-header title e.g. "Headline Blogging: Expressive Aphasia”.
  • Now, in (2) article at the bottom, there is a display of 4 title topics  for 4 each week for the future. (Before only (1) displayed).
I think it is close but, I’m sure, they need a few more wrinkles. If you have your opinion for wrinkles and, about specifically the format, just e-mail me to


Dr. Beagle C. Cranium
Stroke Survivors Tattler

Daily Comics

For Better and For Worse
Lynn Johnston

Canada Family Events
Scott Adams

Dilbert Office Events

Edmonton Journal
Malcolm Mayes
Politics Views from Canada

Garry Trudeau

Politics Views from USA

** I tried to get low or free price at the people for the images for the cartoons. It was too high for Stroke Survivors Tattler i.e. we are not a regular newspaper and our budget is very, very low. Fortunately, you will have to do only 1-click more to see the cartoon image, it is legit and it is free using and


Saturday, April 11, 2015

Saturday News

Contents of This Week Saturday News:
Dry Needling is the use of either solid filiform needles or hollow-core hypodermic needles for therapy of muscle pain, sometimes also known as intramuscular stimulation (IMS). Acupuncture and dry needling techniques are similar but not the same. A definition from Wikipedia and video clips from YouTube / Vimeo.

Definition: Dry Needling

Dry Needling From Wikipedia,
         the free encyclopedia

Acupuncture and dry needling techniques
are similar but not the same
Dry needling is the use of either solid filiform needles or hollow-core hypodermic needles for therapy of muscle pain, sometimes also known as intramuscular stimulation (IMS). Acupuncture and dry needling techniques are similar but not the same.

The origin of the term “dry needling” is attributed to Janet Travell, M.D. In her book, 'Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction: Trigger Point Manual', Dr. Travell uses the term "dry needling" to differentiate between two hypodermic needle techniques when performing trigger point therapy. The two techniques she described are the injection of a local anesthetic and the mechanical use of a hypodermic needle without injecting a solution (Travell, Simons, & Simons, 1999, pp. 154–155). Dr. Travell preferred a 22-gauge, 1.5-in hypodermic needle for trigger point therapy and used this needle for both injection therapy and dry needling. Dr. Travell never used a filiform needle (aka “acupuncture” needle). Dr. Travell had access to acupuncture needles but reasoned that they were far too thin for trigger point therapy. She preferred hypodermic needles because of their strength and tactile feedback:“A 22-gauge, 3.8-cm (1.5-in) needle is usually suitable for most superficial muscles. In hyperalgesic patients a 25-gauge, 3.8-cm (1.5-in) needle may cause less discomfort, but will not provide the clear “feel” of the structures being penetrated by needle and is more likely to be deflected by the dense contraction knots that are the target… A 27-gauge needle, 3.8-cm (1.5-in) needle is even more flexible; the tip is more likely to be deflected by the contraction knots and it provides less tactile feedback for precision injection” (Travell, Simons, & Simons, 1999, p. 156).

Video: Dry Needling


There many, many YouTube available about “Dry Needling”. I put only a sample and you can investigate more if you want to...
  1. Introduction
  2. Foot
  3. Thigh
  4. Back
  5. Chest & Abdomen
  6. Arm

1. Introduction

Dry Needling: A Brief History and Demonstration

Published on Mar 17, 2012

History of Dry Needling explaining the difference between it and acupuncture. Video includes and explanation of the term Dry Needling and a demonstration of the technique.

Standard YouTube License @ Troy Sammons

Eclectic Stuff

Definition: Eclectic(noun) a person who derives ideas, style, or taste from a broad and diverse range of sources.

Medical Establishment

Amy Shissler
My Cerebellar Stroke Recovery
July 3, 2014

I received an email yesterday from someone whose family member recently had a stroke and he was looking for information.  He has looked into some alternative treatments and said this…
I’ve been researching such treatments as hyperbaric oxygen therapy as well as Chinese Scalp acupuncture to treat her paralysis.  However, I’m a little leery because those methods have not been endorsed by the medical establishment.
This was my reply…..
Unfortunately anything that will help is not endorsed by the medical establishment.  You’re going to have to let go of the thinking that doctors are now the most knowledgeable people and the ones to go to for help.  That’s not the place to depend on for information.  It was very irresponsible of her doctors to say that there will be no more recovery.  I highly highly recommend getting her involved with some sort of meditation practice.
I remember the days of scouring the internet and writing emails to people hoping for some help.  All of my emails were to the wrong people.  If you or your loved one is within the first year, maybe 2 years of a stroke, you don’t know yet.  You don’t know that doctors, particularly neurologists, will not help you.  You have to find your own ways to get better and it doesn’t involve Western Medicine for the most part.  Neurological injuries are a bitch and a half.  It takes a hell of a lot more than going to some doctor and therapy appointments to even remotely overcome something like this.

See the original article:

[Guest Article] Acupuncture and Stroke Recovery

Pamela Hsieh
Rehab Revolution
31 May 2012

image yoinked from
My name is Cara, and I am a 22 year-old stroke survivor who suffered from left-side paralysis and have tried various healing methods in hopes to reach a full recovery: I’m an avid reader of this blog, and I honor its mission to never limit one’s healing. I have tried mostly a mixture of both Western and Eastern healing methods. I would like to describe my experience with an Eastern form of medicine and healing method — acupuncture. It has been almost four months since I had my stroke, and I have gotten almost 60% mobility back on my left side as of today. In my experience, most of my mobility was regained in a short amount of time (two weeks) after receiving acupuncture.

Now, what exactly is acupuncture? It’s a set of procedures that involve stimulating anatomical points on the body by various techniques. The different techniques I have gotten done on my body by my acupuncturist are needles, cupping, and acupressure. Acupuncture needles are the most commonly known, where thin needles are placed on various points of the body to bring pain relief and energy balance in the body. Cupping is where glass cups are placed on the body and a vacuum is created inside the cup, sucking the skin into the cup where blood flow rushes to the area, improving circulation. Lastly, acupressure is basically acupuncture without the needles, where the acupuncturist manually applies pressure to specific points on the body using fingertips. For today, I will focus on acupuncture needles and my experience with this.

Acupuncture Doesn't Seem to Help

Jeff Porter
Stroke of Faith
Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I've always been a little skeptical of acupuncture - even though for all I know, it might work for some people in some circumstances.

However, for those recovering from a stroke, according to Reuters Health, acupuncture might not be helpful: 
"Our meta-analysis of data from rigorous randomized sham-controlled trials did not show a positive effect of acupuncture as a treatment for functional recovery after stroke," Dr. Jae Cheol Kong of Wonkwang University in Iksan, South Korea, and colleagues conclude in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ). 
Some recent studies have found no benefit for acupuncture when it is compared to sham acupuncture, a placebo version of the traditional Chinese medicine technique that can involve needling non-acupuncture points, penetrating the skin shallowly, or not penetrating the skin at all.

See the original article:

Last Thursday...

Barb Polan
Barb’s Recovery
8th August 2010

Last Thursday I went to another meeting of the Addison Gilbrt stroke support group and had the pleasure of talking with those happy optimistic people about alternative therapies. They suggested: acupuncture, horseback riding, aquatherapy, and Botox(!) injections. They also highly recommended the therapists at AG.

Friday, my PT consisted of having a WalkAide sales rep fit me and program a session specifically for me using a WalkAide, which straps on just below my knee and gives me an electrical stimulation each time I lift my left foot, to eliminate "foot drop" and improve my gait. By the time I finished that day, I was exhausted, then waited for Tom to arrive on his way home from work. Unfortunately, I must have left my phone there at the rehab hospital because I haven't seen it since I texted Tom "finished" at the end of the session. I hate to call the rehab hospital Monday to check on my phone because about a month ago I was sure I must have left it there and they spent time searching for it, when it turned out that I had lost it inside our car. This time, though, Tom checked the car and said it didn't ring when he called it from inside the car.

Yesterday was the Gloucester Gig Rowers race that I had signed up to participate in when a survey went around at the beginning of the sea on, but I couldn't row in it because my therapists said I would not be ready. The winners made it around the 5.5 mile course in 40 minutes. It is approximately the same distance as the Head of the Weir race I am approved to row in in October. To be ready, I am using a rowing machine to train and I am currently at 10 minutes at a time, just finishing 4 times this past week. My goal is to go for an hour, which is the length of the training rows actually, it's the length of all rows, but some are less intense than others. Conditioning and race-training rows are the most demanding, while recreational and instructional rows are less so. When I use the rowing machine, I can feel my left arm pulling, but I struggle to keep my left hand around the handle. Each day Tom has a new way of attaching my hand to the handle - today's version included wiring closed the splint holding my hand onto the handle. It's not a long-term solution because I could not get my hand attached by myself.

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Garbage Can Send You to a Nursing Home

Rebecca Dutton
Home After a Stroke
April 3, 2015

I live alone so I cannot stay in my home if stinky garbage piles up on my patio.  People would call the health department.  After my stroke a neighbor took my garbage to the curb for a month.  However, I do not want neighbors to think if they help me for a short while they have volunteered for life.  Paying a nursing home $8,000 a month is a really expensive way to get rid of garbage (Genworth Survey of Long-Term Care).  Here are adaptive devices that make me independent.

Garbage. I use Hefty Ultimate garbage bags.  They have an elastic drawstring built into the top of the bag which grips the top of the garbage can in my kitchen.  I place the full garbage bag on the seat of a kitchen chair so I do not have to lean down very far to tie a knot in the drawstring with my teeth and sound hand.  Once the bag is tightly sealed I kick it down my front steps without any spills.  I put the bag in a rolling garbage can to take the garbage to the curb.  I learned not to push the garbage can by tilting the can and rolling it on the wheels.  The first time I did this I almost fell when the garbage can got away from me.  By putting the wheels in front (see arrow) I can push it like a rolling walker.

CAUTION: I used to drag a cane in my hemiplegic hand so I could walk back to the house.  Now my balance is good enough to walk back without a cane.

Recycling. My town recycles glass, metal, and plastic containers.  The short yellow container I was given is too heavy and awkward for me to carry to the curb.  The photo shows the Devault Plant Dolly.  Six casters under the dolly make it roll smoothly.  To pull the dolly back to the house, I threaded a long strap through the central hole that is designed to let plants drain.

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