Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Pediatric Physical Therapy. What we do.

Anyone reading this blog ever been to PT? At MMPT, we see kids big and small. Our slogan is "We see kids from 0-99!". My favorite patient, and the one I think I have the most experience and skill with is the baby with high muscle tone, who is stiff and totally confused on how to move. Let me tell you a little about what I do on a regular basis...

This is Miss Kelsey!
Her mom, Nora, actually reads the blog and gave me permission to post about her online. Kelsey comes to therapy three times a week.... from out of town!
This requires a great deal of sacrifice on the parts of her mom and dad, and on Fridays, her grandmother.
I have Kelsey all strapped down with neoprene, because I want to teach her about her trunk. I need her to realize that her upper body and lower body are connected. Most would think that comes naturally. But to a baby with a brain injury, it has to be learned.
Kelsey tends to avoid play with her feet altogether. This avoidance not only leads to a sensory neglect, but also an improper movement set which will prevent standing and walking.
She also has a strong avoidance of use of her right arm/ hand. In the photos first posted, you will see she is playing with vibrating toys in her right hand to facilitate more of a sensory awareness of this extremity and to encourage her to look at that hand, as she also has a strong preference to the left side entirely. She appears to be using her right arm well in these photos, but....
That's just because she has a FAB-U-LOUS PT! Ha!!

Truly, the positions you see her in appear much more effortless than they really are! It requires knowing exactly how to best position my hands to facilitate her abdominals to kick in to keep her head/chin tucked, her right arm forward for weightbearing, and her feet flat and in a good position for accepting weight... without hyperextension. (Nora... you KNOW this, don't you!?)
You have to give her enough assistance to create a normal position/ movement, but not so much that she becomes passive and doesn't work a little herself.
And on top of all that, she's a kid who'd get bored if we weren't engaging her in play of some sort!
And then we get moments like this...
For the most part a very special connection between therapist and child.
I feel very blessed to do what I do.
I feel very blessed to have met Kelsey.
Join me in praying for total use of Kelsey's right hand and that she will walk normally someday!
Mo

14 comments:

AndeMski said...

I am 15 and I just "graduated" from Physical Therapy!

Lori said...

And I would just like to say that Melanie and her Team are the BEST Therapists in the world! And I know...she treats my son (since he was 1 year old) to my dad after a stroke. We love Melanie Massey PT!!!

Amy K said...

Bless all of you for sharing your PT gifts as you put your heart and souls into helping each of these amazing patients.

Kathryn said...

Go, Kelsey, go! Thank you for teaching me today.

Meredith said...

I thank God for the PT (and OT) we have for Gabe everyday. They are fabulous! We love them to pieces and they work so hard with Gabe so that he'll be able to walk and use his left hand/arm normally.

Actually, everything you wrote about little Kelsey sounds just like our Gabe, except it's his left hand/arm instead of his right.

Thanks for all the hard work you do!

Momma and Her Doodle said...

Your caring and compassion comes through in your work. That is rare to find up North here. I am glad to be your "across the miles" friend.

Kelsey, keep playing, reaching and growing big! One day you WILL walk and run and Melanie will have to run after you.

Emily said...

Mel-Tell Nora of Shelbi's story and how far she has come with her right side weakness. And baby Kelsey is getted started way earlier than Shelbi Mae so she should do GREAT!

Sharidrew said...

God bless you Melanie! What a rewarding career you've chosen. (both for you and your patients) I'm sure all the families you and your clinics help are very grateful! Merry Christmas to you!!

Hugs from Missouri,
Shari Drew

Amy said...

Love what you do and who you are!!

Michele said...

Prayers for Kelsey!!! Oh..Mo...my son is a stoke survivor and like Kelsey has right side weakness! I'd give anything if we lived close enough to come to your practice!!!

tricia said...

such special work that you all do. God's angels on earth

snekcip said...

God has already begun a GREAT WORK in Kelsey's healing, he has brought both Kelsey and MMPT team as a wonderul unit! Continued prayers being said here in Texas for Little Miss Kelsey.

BTW She is a dollbaby!!

Nora said...

What can I say? Honestly, I can't even remember how I found Jake's caringbridge page and read it day after day and then followed MoJoy....but I do know why. When we were faced with the question of where to go, I already knew the answer...MMPT! Thank you for loving our baby girl and for teaching us all what and how....and the BIG words! We are blessed to be patients! And thank you to everyone for the sweet comments and prayers!
Love,
Jason, Nora, Julia Kate & Kelsey

Kaia said...

Thanks for sharing-I always find these posts interesting!