Tutor System Assists SCI Patients to Recover

Driving in My Car

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Published Saturday October 8th, 2011 in the Daily Gleaner COLIN MCPHAIL writes that The Stan Cassidy Centre for Rehabilitation was the focus of attention on the second day of the Fredericton leg of the Rick Hansen 25th Anniversary Man In Motion Relay.
Thanks to the centre and the inspiration offered by Rick Hansen himself  Wilf Torunski, who has been in a wheelchair for the past 41/2 years drove there from his home in St. Stephen himself.
Wilf suffered a spinal column injury (SCI) caused by a bacterial infection, Torunski now 69, was on the brink of death and left without the ability to functionally use his legs.
“I couldn’t even wiggle my toes,” he said to the crowd of more than 40 at the Stan Cassidy therapeutic recreational centre Friday morning.
“I went through a near-death experience. During this time, I couldn’t tell the difference between day or night and I was still hallucinating.”
 Even though his chances of recovery were slim due to age, 65 at the time, and his height, 6’3 inches, hsi wife was the impetus for him to start intensive rehabilitation.
Torunski underwent intensive physical physiotherapy and occupational therapy at the Blusson Spinal Cord Centre in Vancouver. At the Blusson Centre, the home of the Rick Hansen Institute, he was accepted into the first Lokomat Research Project under the auspices of  Dr. Tania Lam  – His objective was to walk with the aid of and get in and out of a car. He achieved this.
 The Canadian Paraplegic Association of New Brunswick – now called Ability NB referred him to the Stan Cassidy centre. He is now pushing his limits once again four years after being told he would never walk again.  There has been a tremendous evolution and revolution in health care,and hope for with spinal cord injuries” he said.
The LegTutor and its sister devices (HandTutor, ArmTutor and 3DTutor) are used in physiotherapy and occupational therapy to treat with victims of Spinal Column Injury and MS for some time now.
The Tutor system is used in an inpatient, outpatient and home rehabilitation environment  as an aid in order to achieve the patient’s functional ability goal as much as possible.
It is designed for those who have head, trunk, upper and lower extremity movement dysfunction as a result of stroke, Parkinson’s disease, CP or post arm and leg surgery in addition to those mentioned above. The Tutor system consists of ergonomic wearable devices together with powerful dedicated rehabilitation software. The LegTutor and its sister devices (HandTutor, ArmTutor and 3DTutor) works by offering the patient intensive exercise practice based on motivating and challenging games that allow the patient to practice isolated and/or interjoint coordination exercises. Controlled exercise practice is the mainstay of physiotherapists and physical and occupational therapists manual therapy method. Manual therapy using the Tutor system will help to prevent the development of compensatory movement patterns. The dedicated software allows the therapist to fully customize the exercises to the patient’s movement ability whether the patient has good range of motion or limited movement ability. In addition the therapist can objectively and quantitatively evaluate and report on the treatment progress this can be presented to the patient to encourage his continued participation in exercises.  In conclusion, the rehabilitation system using the Tutor system optimizes the patient’s motor, sensory and cognitive performance and allows the patient to better perform everyday functional tasks to improve their quality of life. The Tutor system is FDA and CE certified.
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