Paralysis of limbs occurs secondary to damage to the brain after a stroke, head injury or a tumor.
A stroke is circulatory disturbance of the brain and can be due to blockage of a blood vessel, or due to rupture of a blood vessel leading to haemorrhage.
Head injury can result in damage to the brain itself, or collection of blood inside the brain or in the coverings of the brain.
Brain tumours can be benign or malignant and can push the brain and occupy space causing pressure of the brain or can invade and infilterate the brain
In all these conditions after the acute incident is over, there can be weakness of the limbs of the opposite side of the body, with or without involvement of speech
This weakness of limbs may recover if rehabilitation is started early and the brain damage is not extensive
In most patients, there is residual weakness which is permanent or semi permanent
This weakness is associated with stiffness of muscles called as spasticity and often associated also with pain and stiffness of the joints.
Weakness, pain and spacticity interfere with the ability to perform ADL (Activities of Daily Living)
Rehabilitation is the only way to improve function. There are no drugs which help. Most treatments are directed towards treating the primary cause or associated conditions like high cholesterol, hypertension, diabetes, etc and agents to reduce risk factors or prevention of a second stroke
Rehabilitation can improve function if given appropriately and early as the brain has the capacity to adapt and recover with external stimulation – this is called neuroplasticity
Rehabilitation options available are physiotherapy or exercises, occupational therapy or exercises aimed at improving specific functions, speech therapy for training speech, and electrical stimulation like functional electrical stimulation, biofeedback, etc
Local injections of Botulinum toxin (Botox) can help improve spasticity, which allows better physiotherapy to be done
In brain damage, the message from the brain to the muscle to contract is lost. If the muscle contracts, it moves the joint, which is also controlled by the extent to which the movement must occur. Most stimulation devices work at the level of the spinal cord, where an external stimulation results in a movement through a spinal reflex loop. The brain to muscle command is not redeveloped.
Mentamove is a novel, simple, easy to use device which activates the brain to muscle communication as it uses mental imagery to enhance motor performance which develops the brain’s neuroplasticity to recruit various areas of the brain to assist recovery.
If minimal function is available, the device is able to rapidly increase function even upto 5 years poststroke in many patients.
In patients who recover, loss of pain and reduction of spasticity are the first symptoms to improve, hence enabling better physiotherapy as well.
Mentamove therapy is USFDA approved and in use in several centers all over the world and is now available in India in Mumbai, Indore, Pune and Chennai.
We, at EPICENTTRE are pleased to introduce it at Chennai