My Future Therapy

My Future Self-Invented Therapy will be combined of:
1. Extensive Gait walking [1]
2.  4-AP-3-MeOH (new experimental medication)
3. Virtual Reality Program (adjusted for Incomplete SCI)

Let me explain in few words what I have learned after 14 years in wheelchair and after so many Yo-Yo physical rehab attempts, self-testing experimental medication and research. I have figured out that only way to make difference and preserve achieved progress is to stop waiting and go radical & invent my own therapy. [2]

PROGRESS IS POSSIBLE

Victims of Spinal cord injuries can recover to certain extent with a long and custom tailored physiotherapy.
Unfortunately, this fact is not everywhere accepted or is not welcomed with healthcare systems as too long = too expensive approach.
Patient’s are rather sold all kinds of wheelchairs & assistive equipment, told lies of possible outcome as “you’d never walk again” or wishes as “medicine science will come up with cure in 5 years”.
It’s easier, less expensive & stressful to teach such a patient to accept life in wheelchair than proceed with 3-4-5 hours 1:1 physio therapies daily with “uncertain outcome”. This approach looks better on statistic charts too for any rehab or hospital. However, this is not the best choice for injured, paralyzed patients, unfortunately. [3]

IN-COMPLETE

In more than 80% cases, spinal cord injuries are caused with contusion or bruise on one part of spinal cord where larger portion of spinal cord is preserved. Such a patients with Incomplete SCI have more chance to recover – due to neuroplasticity [4] – than victims with totally cut off cord .
It is proven that healthy part of brain or spinal cord can take over function from damaged part. But, unfortunately, this will not going to happen by itself. Only way neuroplasticity recovery happens is after countless move or try to move repetitions. This process is painfully slow and as soon as certain exercise procedure / pattern is stopped, patient loosing whatever progress was made exponentially fast.

Luckily, there are some new tricks in bag that can help this process shorten with more chance for recovery.

GAIT AND ROBOTIC WALK

First, there are different equipment for suspended weight / gait walk training and robotic suites with sensory to detect patient ability to move and to assist motion  close to real standing and walking pattern.

VIRTUAL REALITY TRICK

There are also recent findings that “tricking” brain with Virtual reality
can accelerate brain and spinal cord neuroplasticity process.
Group of scientist’s from Brazil combined repetitive walking technique with virtual reality & brain interface achieve incredible results with Complete spinal cord injured patients[5].
Also, more and more researches and companies working toward a goal to accommodate Virtual Reality program for certain rehab procedures[6].

EXPERIMENTAL MEDICATION – 4-AP-3-MeOH

Chances are that Incomplete injuries will recover faster, with similar program.
Incomplete injuries must not have Brain interface (cap with electrodes) at all.
To help existing partially damaged or impaired nerves better conduct signals from the brain, potassium channel blockers are used for decades.
The latest, 4-AP-3-MeOH blocker, experimental medication makes big difference in exercise outcome with less side effects than 4-AP or (F)Ampyra [7].

To summarize above, I am planning to test this combined therapy ASAP!!
Gait walking + 4-AP-3-MeOH + Virtual Reality Program 
If I prove this with me going back on my feet again after 14 years in wheelchair,
I can help to change life to many Incomplete Spinal Cord Injured patients as they
will have all details of this program / therapy available for FREE !

Right now, I am in search to secure stable supply of experimental medication 4-AP-3-MeOH.
Second thing – I will try to obtain VR program that will help me in this process.
I am also working hard to be able to allocate funds for this self-help experiment / therapy.

Z.K.

[1] I am C-6 Incomplete SCI and my legs can not hold me. I need gait -suspension weight support to be able to try to make steps. In several years, as a member of University of McMaster special gym for Spinal Cord Injury rehab I was walking above treadmill with suspended weight and stepping help by couple of student volunteers and my steps had improved considerably, even I was walking only twice per week by 40 minutes. However, I stay without funding once when they increased price 10 times in September 2016 and I have stop with walking therapy. In some previous rehab attempts and according to  some other
walking therapy achievements [a] I know that at least 6 months programmed walking therapy with at least 20 hours walking per week with  4-AP-3-MeOH potassium channel blocker and Virtual reality program help will help me to walk again!! 

[2]  Yo-Yo rehab effect is known to patients and physio-therapists and could be overcome only with some new, radical approach.

[3] From my personal experience with Canadian Health Care system;

[4] The human brain and spinal cord has the amazing ability to reorganize itself by forming new connections between neurons – this is called NeuroPlasticity.

[5] See https://www.nature.com/articles/srep30383

[6] MindMaze, company with successful VR program for rehab of stroke victims is moving closer, according to them, toward VR rehab program for Spinal cord injuries. Also some other sources of Virtual Reality in rehab found here: [a] [b] [c]

[7] Unfortunately, this new medication is tested on animals only and group of self-testing volunteers (including me) and it’s not always easy to obtain. [4a] [4b] [4c] [4d] [4e]