Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Contessa Bionessa


Cortical Reorganization.

This is like learning a whole new language!

I went to Methodist Rehab today to be trained on how to use the BIONESS H200 nerve stimulation device. It's our fancy new "toy" that will help retrain Nicole's brain to communicate with her hands so that she can eventually regain more function.

The actual medical definition of neuroplasty is the brain's ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections throughout life. Neuroplasticity allows the neurons (nerve cells) in the brain to compensate for injury and disease and to adjust their activities in response to new situations or to changes in their environment.

As the BIONESS rep explained to us today, "think of it as a road that runs from Point A to Point B. Suddenly, the bridge is out, and you can no longer use that road. But you still want to get from Point A to Point B. So, you must find an alternate route--a detour. That's what Nicole's brain is trying to do right now.

She started wearing the device this evening. She has to do two 20-minute sessions per hand. Then, she'll add five minutes a day, until she's worked up to two 90-minute sessions per hand per day. That's alot of time, and she can't do the two hands simultaneously, as it will confuse the brain. And it's not a passive activity. She has to focus, because her brain is learning something new. It's like learning to ride a bike, swim, drive a car, or even to dance! If you do any of those things enough, you don't think about it...it becomes second nature.

So as Nicole sits propped up in her big orange chaise lounge wearing her BIONESS device, I'll greet her as "Contessa Bionessa." If she doesn't like it, she can use the newfound function in her hands to give me a swat...or the finger, whichever she thinks of first!

We are grateful we have this wonderful device. The chain of events that led to us having it were no accident. Looking back, it was all too perfect. His plan. Thank you, God!

Tonight we are sending prayers up for Betty Moore, aka "Dirty Betty," Josh's grandmother. She fell and broke her hip last night and will now need hip replacement surgery. That means another stint in REHAB! I know a little cheerleader who can make sure she gets the most out of her physical therapy...

Blessings to all who read this!

No comments:

Post a Comment