Mr. D’s story
Caste Study - Mr. D's storyMr. D, a 30 year old, businessman from Hyderabad came to us on a wheelchair as he was suffering from Spinocerebellar Ataxia from a period of 5 years. Due to severe incoordination, his gait was impaired which was also affected by the added effect of obesity. The major complaint was inability to walk and severe difficulty in doing daily life tasks. On a thorough assessment it was found that he had a broad based (ataxic) gait, the strength of his thigh and leg muscles had reduced, there were tremors in his hands while performing any activity, his hand writing had become illegible due to incoordination and daily routine activities had become impossible to perform mainly due to incoordination. He couldn’t eat independently, button his shirt, brush his teeth or go for a walk. His speech had become hoarse and incoherent and he had difficulty in breathing. Mr. D underwent a customized Regenerative Rehabilitation program which comprised of Regenerative medicine or stem cell therapy along with Rehabilitation that focused on improving his daily routine tasks. The physiotherapy team set goals to improve his strength, endurance and gait while the occupational therapy treatment focused on improving his bed mobility, indoor mobility, hand functions and activities of daily living. For improving his speech and breathing functions, the speech therapist formulated a plan to improve the strength and coordination of his oral muscles, breath pressure and breathing capacity. Towards the completion of the treatment program, he started walking independently, he was able to perform his daily activities with a greater ease, his speech and swallowing functions improved to a great extent and he also lost significant amount of weight which also boosted his activity performance. His could walk with a narrow and more “normal” base of support, he started going to his workplace and his overall community mobility improved. He was able to enjoy his favourite meal without embarrassing himself with spillage, he could walk without being called a “drunkard” as his gait was no more a “dunken gait” and he could wear his favourite pair to shoes to work. Towards the time of discharge, Mr. D was trained to carry out the exercises and activities taught during the program, all by himself at home. In order to maintain his functioning it was important for him to continue the exercises and keep an eye on his weight.
Motor Neuron Disease…there is hope!
Caste Study - Motor Neuron DiseaseMr. K, a 42 year old software engineer was diagnosed with this devastating neurodegenerative disorder in March, 2017. The first sign he observed was not being able to clip his finger nails using a nail clipper which was followed by slow onset of pain in the right shoulder. As days melted into months, his disability went on increasing and mundane daily activities like dressing and bathing became difficult. He was unable to lift his right shoulder, there was severe weakness and pain on movement. He also noticed that he was unable to rotate his forearm, meaning that he was not able to place his hand with the palm facing the roof. The weakness went on progressing to the other extremities as well and started affecting his walk. He went for multiple consultations and underwent various neurological examinations where he was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, a motor neuron disease that causes the death of neurons controlling the voluntary muscles. He came to Plexus in March, 2019 with difficulty in walking and severe pain and weakness in his upper limbs. His main complaint was not being able to use his hands for his daily activities. A thorough examination was carried out which revealed that the extent of the problem was much more than it appeared to be. Being a neurodegenerative condition, the disease had progressed to a great extent. There was not only weakness but also severe tightness in all his joints. He was inducted into the Regenerative Medicine program which included stem cell therapy along with various custom-made rehabilitative programs to relieve him from his concerns. The goal of Regenerative Medicine in this case is to stop or slow down the disease progression. He underwent a custom made treatment program comprising of physiotherapy that focused on relieving his joint pain and stiffness, improving the strength of his lower limbs and improve walking; occupational therapy that focused on the hand functions to help improve his ability to perform his daily life activities and speech therapy to strengthen his oral structures and improve his breathing and swallowing as a preventive measure. He was also provided with a customized splint that focused on his thumb drop and helped in attaining an active grip. After a period 45 days of undergoing treatment, it was seen that he was able to perform all his daily activities independently. He was able to grip objects of varied sizes including the fine objects which were impossible to grip when he enrolled into the treatment; pain and tightness in the arms disappeared and his walking improved. Being a progressive neurodegenerative condition, it was a herculean task to tackle the disease at this stage but results were overwhelming for both the patient and the treating team. The videos show a comparison between his clinical state at the time of enrollment into the program and at the completion of the treatment.
A doctor with Parkinson’s disease
Cognitive Rehabilitation in Cerebral Palsy
Caste Study - Cognitive Rehabilitation in Cerebral PalsyMr. P, a 26 year old boy from Andhra Pradesh came to us with deficits in his cognitive functioning that affected his daily life. As per the parents, he had difficulty in reading time, balance was affected as he had difficulty in maintaining an upright posture on different surfaces, among his daily living skills he had difficulty in eating (there was spillage of food), money management and community mobility was also impaired. On a detailed assessment it was found that he was a case of Cerebral Palsy with poor cognitive functioning. He had a low level of arousal, difficulty in following commands, poor attention and concentration skills, poor social skills (inadequate eye contact, fear while communicating, decreased facial expressions and poor expression of emotions), balance, coordination and hand functions were affected, poor hand-writing skills, poor money management skills. He underwent treatment at Plexus for a period of two and a half months which included stem cell therapy, physiotherapy to improve his muscle tone, balance and endurance and occupational therapy to deal with the challenges of his daily life. During the sessions he was trained for improving his communication skills, money management and budgeting skills and all his cognitive deficits were targeted through custom made occupational therapy activities. Apart from this, his community mobility was achieved by training him to ride a bicycle in our occupational therapy sessions. While the physiotherapists focused on attaining and improving his balance responses and coordination skills, the occupational therapists translated the same skills in his daily life through activities. At the end of the program, Mr. P was an entirely different person, his money management skills improved considerably, he was even able to perform complex skills such budgeting with no assistance, his social skills, handwriting and daily life improved as a whole and he started participating in his family business.
Child with Cerebral Palsy starts walking
Caste Study - Child with Cerebral Palsy starts walkingChilds’s first steps are a moment of exhilaration for the parents. The joy they feel when the child comes running to them only to crash into their unconditionally loving arms cannot be explained. But joy is an understatement when it comes to the first independently taken steps of a 1 year old child from Chennai affectionately known as Mani. After undergoing a comprehensive treatment at Plexus, Mani, diagnosed at birth with Cerebral Palsy took her first steps this month. According to the mother, Dr. Puneeta, this is a leap of faith for her and her family. She expresses, “I can’t put into words how and what we all are feeling. We found the right place, at the right time and the right doctor – Dr. Na’eem Sadiq. Thanks is a small word and it cannot fit the enormity of this moment for us. We thank the entire team of Plexus for bringing about this miraculous change in my child.” This is just one example of the excellent work that is carried out by Dr. Na’eem Sadiq and his team at Plexus. Due to his enormous contribution to the field of neurology, he has been globally recognized and felicitated with over 45 national and international awards. Recently he received the Times Excellence award for the best neurologist on November 30th, 2018 at Sheraton Grand Hotel, Bangalore. Apart from developmental neurological disorders, he has expertise in a number of other conditions, autism, developmental delay, parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, stroke, motor neuron disease, dementia, neuropsychiatric conditions to name a few. His undying passion to improve lives, knowledge, expertise and ability to empathize with his patients is what makes him a leading figure in the field of neurology. He aims to make Plexus the leading healthcare service provider recognized globally for excellent patient care, advanced stem cell therapy and highly specialized rehabilitative services.
An art teacher’s dream
Caste Study - Ataxia TelangiectasiaBaby Indu (name changed) is a 10-year-old girl from Bangalore. She had been suffering from ataxia telangiectasia, a genetic condition which was believed to have no treatment in medical science so far.
Her family history includes father working in a cycle repair shop and mother housewife. She has one younger sister also. As for her past medical history, she was growing fine till 2013 when she started suffering from bouts of fever with recurrent respiratory infections. This was followed by progressive weakness in upper and lower limbs. Eventually she lost her ability to perform daily activities like bathing, dressing, grooming, eating, and toileting independently. Her condition started deteriorating and she was unable to walk, talk and follow commands. She was brought to Plexus in December 2017.
On assessment it was found out that she had slow response to verbal commands, poor reaction time, very poor postural control and low arousal level. Whenever she attempted to walk she had frequent falls as her balance was also poor. Besides, she had poor eye-hand coordination, coupled with poor speech.
She underwent three and a half months of intensive treatment at Plexus. She was treated by a specialized medical team involving neurologist, physiotherapist, occupational, speech and language therapists.
It was a pleasant surprise that after treatment her condition improved by almost 50-60 percent! There was a noticeable improvement in her level of arousal. She was more alert, started to respond faster to verbal commands. She was able to carry out all her activities independently. Her walking balance, which was much of a concern in the past, showed signs of great improvement. What is more, after the treatment she was able to play cricket with her younger sister! Her holistic development does not end there, her speech improved by 50%. Now she is able to recite rhymes like “twinkle twinkle little stars” with actions.
For her parents seeing her improvement was nothing short of a miracle.
A Holistic Approach Towards Treatment of Autism
Caste Study - A Holistic Approach Towards Treatment of AutismMaster ‘A’, a three year old child with Autism enrolled into the Plexus Intensive Rehab Program on 21.01.17 with the characteristic features of autism such as hyperactivity, aggressiveness, no eye contact, typical toe walking, frequent falls, poor response to name call and following of commands. He exhibited severe sensory system related issues such as tactile hypersensitivity, proprioceptive seeking behaviors and vestibular defensiveness. With respect to speech, he used to babble, make some sounds. Also, he displayed inappropriate ways of expressing excitement/ anger and engaged in non-purposeful play.
A holistic approach was initiated to target various aspects for an overall development. This approach targeted the underlying neurological system as well as the skills and behaviours that were super imposed on it. Occupational therapy treatment, which formed the crux of the intervention was focused on developing the gross motor skills, fine motor skills, socio-emotional and academic abilities, dealing with sensory issues, facilitating active participation in daily activities and play with peers.
Play based therapy was used as an important tool to allow the child familiarize himself to his new surroundings. He was allowed to explore the environment freely rather than forcing him to perform therapeutic activities. Creating a strong trustworthy therapeutic rapport with the child was a major goal. Gradually, as the child became comfortable, rigorous therapies were started. A complete sensory program was created for the child. Various techniques such as deep joint compression, neutral warmth, calming activities and use of physical activities were carried out to decrease hyperactivity and aggression. Sensory based play activities were used extensively to handle the various sensory concerns. Behavioral strategies such as use of reinforcers, time-outs were used extensively to curb temper tantrums.
Gradually, amazing changes were observed in the child. The first major change appreciated by the parents were that he is no longer aggressive and hyperactive. As the occupational therapy program progressed, the child demonstrated various improvements in every aspect. He became competent in most of the gross motor activities such as jumping, climbing stairs, running, balancing self on various surfaces. The sensory issues of the child comparatively resolved. He developed increased tolerance levels while having a haircut, brushing feet during bath. Reduction in oro-motor issues such as biting hard textures (books), shirt.
He demonstrated great development in the socio-emotional aspect of his personality. He is able to recognize, understand and express emotions (non-verbally) to parents /therapist. He attempts to interact with adults (parents, therapists) non verbally on most occasions. The child actively began exploring his environment through play. The paradigm shifted from non-purposeful to engaging in purposeful play. According to Parten’s stages of play, master ‘A’ shifted from unoccupied play (initial) to parallel play. He initiates playing ‘catch me’ with elders.
During mid-way of the program, the parents were encouraged to enroll the child in a normal school. This gave the child a regular routine, opportunities to interact with age mates and a feeling of ‘normalcy’. He gradually enjoyed attending school, interacts with age mates by singing nursery rhymes, taking part in competitions (running race), in various school activities. This was seen as an achievement as well as paved way for further socio-emotional development of the child.
He displayed great improvement in the cognitive domain too. He understands basic concepts of ‘up’, ‘down’, ‘under’ etc. He is able to identify, name shapes, colors, vegetables, fruits, alphabets (A-Z), numbers, body parts. He performs action rhymes well. Academically, he performs extremely well as mentioned by his school teachers. He actively participates in activities of daily living such as bathing, dressing, eating.
Master ‘A’s’ journey that culminated in him attending a ‘normal’ school was nothing short of a victory for his parents, Dr. Na’eem Sadiq and the occupational therapists.
Turning Setbacks Into Comebacks
About a year ago, Mr S was forced to quit his job as typing on the keyboard was fast becoming an next to impossible task. The diagnosis revealed that he was suffering from Multiple Sclerosis – a condition where nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord are damaged, resulting in severe muscle weakness, muscle spasms, and difficulty in muscle coordination.
Traditional treatment and medications used to treat Multiple Sclerosis, while modestly effective, can have side effects as well as be poorly tolerated by the patient - as was the case with Mr S. No amount of consultations with neurologists seemed to help and the weakness in his arms and legs continued to worsen. This debilitating disease was making even walking or raising arms a difficulty. On the brink of losing all hope of recovery, he was introduced to Dr Na’eem, and through him to the wonders of stem cell therapy.
After carefully evaluating his condition, the Plexus team designed an extensive program for Mr S. Our focus was on returning function, preventing relapse, and reducing the existing damage. A holistic treatment plan, which included stem cell therapy coupled with other rehabilitation techniques such as physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and Chinese medicine, was put in place.
Mr S witnessed remarkable progress through the initial rehabilitation program. Our team ensured strict adherence to the program and proper, timely care. In just a few months, his condition had improved by 85%. His arm regained strength and he could now lift weights up to two kilograms. A quick recovery was on the cards and he soon returned to his hometown and rejoined work. Today, he is living a normal productive life, so much so that he regularly plays football. Truly an incredible recovery for someone who could not even walk a few months ago. Mr S’s story is one of triumph and a true inspiration for all Multiple Sclerosis patients facing setbacks in life.
Helping Patients Reclaim Their Lives
When 65-year-old Mrs Devi from Jharkhand made arrangements to come to Plexus, she wasn’t even sure she could make the trip. Suffering from Parkinson’s Disease (PD), Mrs Devi found it excruciating to get around the house, let alone travel for treatment. Her legs were weak, her feet were partially numb, and she experienced significant hand tremors. To make matters worse, she had recently become wheelchair bound.
The mother of two and grandmother of four had been suffering from Parkinson’s for the past seven years. The disease left her severely handicapped, leaving her unable to perform simple daily activities. Her condition got worse to a point where she felt too weak to even play with her grandchildren – which she considered her greatest loss.
Over the years, her condition had continued to deteriorate, with the onset of severe imbalance issues, muscle stiffness, and slowness in her body and gait. Multiple visits to doctors and multispeciality clinics all proved futile. Traditional treatments and procedures ultimately could not bring Mrs Devi back to her grandchildren. When Mrs Devi finally arrived at Plexus, our team performed extensive diagnostics to understand her condition. After careful analysis, a complete treatment program was designed keeping her specific needs in mind. The ensuing two-month therapy focused on helping her regain strength, build endurance, and improve flexibility. Our holistic approach included a unique combination of stem cell therapy, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, acupuncture, and other rehabilitation therapies suited to a PD patient.
At the end of the two months, Mrs Devi felt a great reduction in the stiffness and tremors attacking her body. The treatment had made a huge difference in her life -- it was now possible for her to get dressed, shower, perform daily chores, and walk normally on her own.
Today, Mrs Devi lives her life without anything holding her back. She has even reported back to Plexus saying that her mood had improved a lot, she has renewed energy, and that she can now manage herself around the house independently. In fact, she even helped throw a party for her grandson’s birthday last year, where she helped with all the cooking and preparations. A year ago, this kind of activity would have been unthinkable for Mrs Davi. But thanks to Plexus, her story of recovery and rejuvenation inspires PD patients all over the world, and gives them hope that they too can regain control of their lives with the right treatment.
Making Dreams Come True
It was four years ago when Mr A, a 58-year-old businessman from Bangalore, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease (PD) after experiencing symptoms for several years prior. He initially thought it was simply a trembling spell, until he started experiencing other symptoms such as involuntary movements, muscle rigidity, and a slow shuffling gait.
Although he was able to cope with the chronic disease initially, with time, the stiffness in his neck and back, and tremors in his arms and legs made day-to-day activities increasingly painful. Visits to multiple doctors proved to be fruitless. Mr A’s condition only worsened, and soon he was unable to chew, swallow, walk, write, or even speak clearly. The trauma and depression that followed made him a recluse – withdrawing from society almost entirely.
However, there was a light at the end of the tunnel. On April 2015, Mr A visited Plexus Neuro and Stem Cell Center, albeit with little hope for improvement. Nevertheless, an in-depth initial investigation by our specialists put to motion an individual treatment route specifically designed for him and the severity of his condition. The treatment was planned to help him regain strength, endurance, and flexibility - essential needs for a PD patient. The plan comprised stem cell therapy, intensive rehabilitation programmes, physiotherapy, and occupational therapy, which steadily rebuilt Mr A’s body and motor skills to perform daily functions.
In just two months, Mr A was a changed man. The treatment significantly improved his condition; he was now able to perform his daily tasks independently. This also gave Mr A his feeling of control and agency back, as he was actually doing things to help himself.
The biggest change though, was in his mental outlook. He began to dismiss his so-far negative attitude towards his condition and adopted a more positive outlook. With his hope restored, Mr A began to re-acclimate himself with society. It was very evident that his quality of life had changed - even his unclear, mumbling voice had been replaced with a louder, stronger one.
Thanks to Plexus’ treatment, what seemed like an impossible dream for Mr A, is now a reality. He is currently close to a 95% recovery. He no longer experiences any PD symptoms and is becoming fitter, stronger, and healthier by the day. In short, Mr A’s story of perseverance and patience is an inspiration for patients worldwide suffering from Parkinson’s.