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Advanced Pediatric Therapies, LLC - Together We Shine! | Developmental Preschool

Intensive PT/Therasuit™ Program


What is Suit Therapy?

Intensive PT

Suit therapy was originally developed and used in Russia’s space program. It was designed to counteract the potentially harmful effects of weightlessness of the body after a space tour. It has now been modified by Richard and Izabela Koscielny (creators of the Therasuit™) and developed to provide intensive treatment to children with neuromuscular disorders. The Therasuit™, which our program uses, consists of a vest, shorts, knee pads, shoe attachments and a hat. It utilizes bungees to correctly align and load the body. Its goal is to change and improve proprioceptive input, reduce pathological reflexes, increase correct movement patterns, and strengthen muscles by providing resistance to movement. The child performs exercises and functional activities, such as transitioning between positions and walking, while in the suit. The input the suit provides to the neuromuscular system helps to retrain the brain to produce correct movement patterns.

View Session Dates

What is the "Cage"?

Intensive PT

The Universal Exercise Unit, or cage, is used in two different ways: as the "monkey cage" and as the "spider cage". The monkey cage utilizes a system of pulleys and weights to isolate and strengthen specific muscles. The spider cage uses a belt and bungee cords to either assist upright positioning or provide resistance when pushing to stand. The spider cage can allow a child to stand without a therapist’s assistance while allowing freedom of movement and facilitating balance, trunk control and reaching. The monkey and spider cages allow a huge variety of activities which can specifically address areas which need improvement while allowing a child to experience the thrill of independent movement.

Check out a family's personal experience with Intensive PT and the Therasuit! For a full experience start viewing the video and reading the blog starting in September 2011. Enjoy this amazing little girl!

What is Intensive Physical Therapy? What are the benefits?

Intensive PT

Our intensive program consists of 4 hours of vigorous therapy four days a week for four weeks for children over the age of three. We utilize the Therasuit™ and the Universal Exercise Unit with activities for strengthening and conditioning, decreasing unwanted reflexes, increasing balance and coordination and teaching new improved motor patterns through repetition and correct alignment. The intensive therapy approach allows many children to advance to the next developmental skill level or gain progress towards goals when they have reached a plateau with traditional therapy. Children may also demonstrate improved skills in this four week training period that would normally take six to eight months of traditional therapy.

Who can benefit?

Intensive PT

The Therasuit is appropriate for and may benefit the following diagnoses:

  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Traumatic or anoxic brain injury
  • Post stroke (CVA)
  • Developmental delay
  • Ataxia
  • Athetosis
  • Spasticity (increased muscle tone)
  • Hypotonia (decreased muscle tone)
  • Spina Bifida
  • Down syndrome

What are the benefits of using the Therasuit™?

Intensive PT
  • Re-train the central nervous system
  • Provide external stabilization
  • Normalize muscle tone
  • Align the body in a more correct position
  • Provide dynamic correction to movement patterns
  • Normalize walking pattern
  • Improve tactile stimulation to muscles
  • Influence the vestibular system
  • Improve balance
  • Improve coordination
  • Decrease uncontrolled movement in ataxia and athetosis
  • Improve body and spatial awareness
  • Support very weak muscles
  • Provide resistance to stronger muscles to further increase strength
  • Improve speech production and fluency through improved trunk support and head control
  • Promote development of both gross and fine motor skills
  • Improve bone density
  • Help to decrease contractures
  • Improve hip alignment

Who cannot use the Therasuit™?

Individuals with the following conditions would not be appropriate for use of the Therasuit™, but may benefit from a modified program without use of the suit. We are able to provide information regarding modified programs at any time.

  • Hip subluxation greater than 50%
  • Severe scoliosis or kyphosis

Are there precautions for Therauit™ treatment?

Intensive PT

We obtain medical clearance for all patients interested in this treatment. We will require additional medical clearance for individuals with the following medical conditions:

  • Heart conditions
  • Uncontrolled seizures
  • Hip subluxation less than 50%
  • Hydrocephalus (VP shunt)
  • Diabetes
  • Kidney problemsv
  • High blood pressure

Resources:

The Therasuit™company: www.suittherapy.com
The AAIPPT: www.aaippt.org (American Association of Intensive Pediatric Physical Therapy)
The APTA: www.apta.org (American Physical Therapy Association)
Videos: www.youtube.com/suittherapy


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