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I thought that stroke recovery although it appears less major after awhile,..can continue for years.My husband has lost hope that my arm will function again after 5 years and I never really thought it wouldn't recover. It doesn't help to have the negativity around, but I also don't want to live in denial of facts

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I do believe that recovery will continue ...years later. Yes, it may be miniscule but recovery keeps happening if you work at it. I do not know that it will be 100% but something will keep happening.

I encourage you to continue with hope and continue working at recovery for that arm.

 

Ruth

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i really think that recovery will continue to get better and better years later so i suggest that you not give up in trying to get as munch recovery as possible don"t ever give up hope for that arm. i do know that i have been told by many that the arm is usually the last to come as there are very fine motor skills , so please don"t give up on that arm.

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The arm/fingers and the hand will improve over time when you are using it daily and getting therapy exercise through your insurance then doing exercise on your own daily at home or in a gym if one is available to you.

 

When you don't use the arm or use it not too often you will not see any change in it getting better. For the fingers I find using a wash cloth or hand towel with both your hands will improve the use of the weak hand and fingers too. Ringing the water out the towel helps you gain control of the weak hand. Try holding the towel and wash your good arm and hand without dropping it on the floor. When you do pick it up with the weak hand.

 

Use the big bath towel to dry your back, leg and arms off holding it with both hands as you pull it across your shoulders. You can do it better after some practice!

 

I use the same cones they use in therapy at my house. I got a full set of them and I sat at the table stacking them with both hands until I get tired. I can hold a coffee cup pretty easily now. I drive too so I use the weak hand holding the steering wheel that also helps me however at times and some days it just won't work like I want it to work. Again, doing something with the weak hand daily is much better than letting it just hang loose doing nothing with it! Let me know how you doing after a week or two! It works for me.

Fred!

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I thought that stroke recovery although it appears less major after awhile,..can continue for years.My husband has lost hope that my arm will function again after 5 years and I never really thought it wouldn't recover. It doesn't help to have the negativity around, but I also don't want to live in denial of facts

This is a hard one, I don't want to come off as giving medical advice. But first you should ask your doctors for their damage diagnosis, Which areas of the brain were just damaged and can recover using easy neuroplasticity and which areas of the brain are dead and require hard neuroplasticity(moving functions to new locations). Until doctors and therapists start thinking about rehabilitation in this way there is no way to compare whether a therapy will work in one person the same way it works in another. In other words all stroke rehab today is totally flying blind or as I like to call it, the naked emperor. Then you can start thinking about negative neuroplasticity(reducing the number of neurons allocated to a task to free them up for the dead functions, my theory only). Start reading up on neurogenesis, it may be years before this is really understood but neuroplasticity does work, it is just extremely hard to get working when you are trying to recreate functions from a dead brain area. If you give up it won't recover but even keeping going will not guarantee recovery.

Dean

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I'm 4 yrs. post-stroke. :wacko: I try to use my arm when I can in my daily routine. Every once in a while it seems like some ittsy-bitsy-tiny-little movement gets a little easier/stronger. I compare it to a baby learning to use his/her arm/hand/fingers. They work on that about 10-18 hours a day for two+ yrs. and then they get pretty good at it. = well over 700 hrs of constantly trying to a. program their brain b. move something that seldom responds at all.I admire the little munchkins, but I'm an adult. I figure ,heck, I'm waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay NOT patient enuf for that. I'm 61 yrs. old...I gotta get on with my life. I can't waste the time I have left on this planet worrying about my arm/hand/fingers or worse being frustrated or sad or disappointed or upset.....so for me..........I'm just gonna go with the flow...it is what is it is................I'm jut sayin'! acuna matadah...... It's just O-N-E opinion, and probably not a correct one or a :nuhuh: popular one. :oops: :secret: :blush: ^_^

:)

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i too do not have function of my left arm/hand. i wish i had some movement, but its just not there. its been 9 years since my stroke, but i work with the hand and arm every day with stretching and exercises helping with my good hand. I WILL NEVER GIVE UP HOPE. i just read the other day of a survivor regaining function 30 years after his stroke, and other stories of survivors getting improvements years out from there strokes. so it can happen,i don't care what anyone says. if we continue to try and work with them and retrain the brain. it can work. i refuse to give up. the brain cells might be dead but new pathways are developed with repetition of any movement we do over and over. so please keep trying. hopefully to prove your hubby wrong. good luck i wish you best in your recovery.

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galpals: :hug:

Ya, I work my hand/arm constantly all day long. What I was trying to say above is I'm just not going to beat myself up over my "condition" anymore. I will never "GIVE UP" . In fact I asked to part of the facebook advertised stem cell research trial....

 

But I was getting to the point that I was feeling guilty because "it" just wasn't happening for me. I felt like I was letting my hubby, kids, family and even myself down..like I wasn't trying hard enuf...I had good insurance and I spent real close to 4 yrs in physical therapy--2-3-4-5 times a week trying reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeally hard. driving driving driving, went into moderate debt to try saebo going to 8-9 different places................etc, etc..........

 

Then late spring this 2011....I decided that I've got to accept myself.and everybody else is just gonna have to accept me like this! I'll keep trying...........but I am NOT GOING TO BEAT MYSELF UP ANYMORE, cuz darn it STROKE SUCKS and this is tough business....seemingly insurmountable odds.......I really need joy, laughter and love in my life. I'll continue to dream the impossiblr dream, but not at the expense of my self esteem and fellings of self-worth with my life. I'm not going to let it defeat me, but I'm also not going to let it make me unhappy either!

:D

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Heather,prry I haven't been able to connect this summer hope you're doing OK 9 yrs later I have no use of my Lt arm.so my question has been how can I exercise what I cant move at all. I, too was getting super discourage, However I was fortunate enough to connect with our own "The Phoenix" ( She is a neuro Doc tWhohad a stroke this spring. My situation though similar is different than many on here. my stroke was not from a clot but a Giant "golf-ball" size aneurysm that ruptured then in order to repair Doc had to clamp my mid crereb ral artery for 13 hrs. Therefor everything fed by that aeter was blood staeved for 13 hrs which resulted in widespread deep damage" she gave me hope. As by being able to understand the depth & location of my damage I could accept her very stron belief that repeated enough times the brain will catch on. I can move my arm at the shoulder so since our conversation. I have taken the time to turn light switches on with my left fist its a nuisance but I realized for the yrs since stroke I had ignored it - only to reinforce my brain not knowing I have a left side.

 

 

Check her profile "the Phoenix " She had once written a blog reiterating her strong belief in the power of repitition.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

She gave me hope again & reason to believe.

 

 

with my situation I was giving up if it were just week & not totally paralyzed I could exercise it &I could have more hope.

 

In the meantime, I'm trying to introduce my brain to my left limbs. I finally know nothing is going to happen by ignoring it.

 

 

 

with Love & best wishes Susan

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Never give up The other day I got a sticker in the side of the sole of my right foot HEY I fet that and I could not believe it WAHOO!!! Never give up One thing is sure you dont want to get to the end of your life and wonder if I had worked at it I wonder if more recovery could have been possible Karen

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One of my mottos is never give up also. It's been 5 years post stroke and I have had a roller coaster of recovery. The down time has been due to falls. Each time I reached the top of the ride, I became complacent, stopped using my walker and down I went knowing I couldn't get up. Each time the recovery from the fall took me down farther, but

I haven't given up. I am still recovering from a compressed fracture of L-1 which happed 2 months ago. I am damned tired of this brace but I'm grateful to have home health care paid by Medicare and so am doing a little PT each week. With God's health I WILL RECOVER AGAIN and hopefull drive again. I take it a day at a time and know that with faith and hope all things are possible. Hugs to you all. Leah

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julie:

 

I agree with you completly. I spent first 2 years crying & waiting for my hand to move so that I can be happy again. learnt my lesson, hand can come back when it wakes up but I am not going to sit in sidelines crying & waiting for him to join me in my wonderful life. It took me long time to realize that my left hand does not dictate my life or define my life and happiness. I am more as a person then just 2 working hands & legs. time never stops for anyone & I will not waste sitting & crying. I will live happily in this 2 handed world as single handed person. I feel with right attitude you can have great life in this wonderful world. but that does not mean you stop trying, what I am saying is keep on working towards its recovery but while you are doing that don't forget to live your life too.

 

Asha

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Guest furiawill

I thought that stroke recovery although it appears less major after awhile,..can continue for years.My husband has lost hope that my arm will function again after 5 years and I never really thought it wouldn't recover. It doesn't help to have the negativity around, but I also don't want to live in denial of facts

This is a hard one, I don't want to come off as giving medical advice. But first you should ask your doctors for their damage diagnosis, Which areas of the brain were just damaged and can recover using easy neuroplasticity and which areas of the brain are dead and require hard neuroplasticity(moving functions to new locations). Until doctors and therapists start thinking about rehabilitation in this way there is no way to compare whether a therapy will work in one person the same way it works in another. In other words all stroke rehab today is totally flying blind or as I like to call it, the naked emperor. Then you can start thinking about negative neuroplasticity(reducing the number of neurons allocated to a task to free them up for the dead functions, my theory only). Start reading up on neurogenesis, it may be years before this is really understood but neuroplasticity does work, it is just extremely hard to get working when you are trying to recreate functions from a dead brain area. If you give up it won't recover but even keeping going will not guarantee recovery.

Dean

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Guest furiawill

I AGREE WITH DOC. IT'S BEEN 14 YEARS FOR ME NOW, BUT I WEAR A NIGHT SPLINT AND TRY USING MY LEFT HAND DAILY IN SOME WAY. DOCTORS JUST DON'T KNOW, BUT, FOR SURE; NON USE WON'T ACCOMPLISH ANYTHING EITHER. SINCE THERE IS NO "MAGIC PILL" TO MAKE US BETTER, THE ONLY OPTION IS TO USE IT AS IS AND COMPENSATE THE BEST WE CAN. I HOPE THIS HELPS. NEVER GIVE UP!

 

-WILL-

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I HAD NO MOVEMENT OF MY ARM OR HAND AND NOW...I CAN MOVE ALL MY FINGERS. I HAVE A NUMB SENSATION IN MY HAND AND IN MY NECK. I TRY AND USE IT AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE.....TYPING IS A PAIN. I USSUALLY JUST GET FED UP AND USE MY RIGHT TO TYPE BUT IT DRIVES ME NUTS. I HAVE BASICALLY NO AFTERCARE......SO IF I DON'T DO IT NO ONE WILL.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I had a Thrombotic Stroke back in 2006 it eff. my right side and my right leg. I walked with a four prong cane and drove a car. Even then my right arm and hand didn't work I have never giving up. Today I still wish my right hand worked. Now I am even more messed up. I'm parlized from the waist down. I can't walk ever again. But yet I still move and breath and am greatful to be alive! So don't ever give up!

 

 

Bruce Schwentker

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Heather: Bruce's Neuro advised day two into stroke that we may have to accept that he will never get his right arm and hand back. He just didn't know. But he gave no reason to give up hope.

 

We have suffered a year lost on Bruce's arm-hand due to problems with his test for the Baclofen pump. Just this summer, we are finally back on track. Bruce's Baclofen oral medication has been increased and the difference already is amazing. We are currently applying for resumption of his Botox injections and then some more OT if approved. We are 2 1/2 years in and he has shoulder extension but not flexion yet, so a long way to go to get to the arm and hand. He Estims the arm twice every day without fail, wears his splint faithfully every single night, constantly flexes and extends the hand with his good hand, now that the Baclofen allows that movement, so Bruce has not given up hope, so therefore, neither can I. Only support and give him the resources he needs.

 

Offer your husband the same hope and conviction that Bruce gives to me. If Bruce would only work as hard on walking, which right now he can do. Don't lose hope honey, and just keep on truckin' Debbie

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I am all for using your affected hand as much as possible, if nothing else the arm becomes lighter and its easier on the shoulder (subluxation) Please do not start with a cup of hot liquids. Always be safe, if you want to practice holding a cup, fill it with cold liquids. You dont want to end up in the burn unit on top of everything else. Fred had good suggestions and he says he can hold his cup now but Im sure he didnt start his therapy doing that. All the best to all of you

 

mc

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I just know that for me, OT can be so frustrating! but I do feel better after doing it BUT some days I just get tired and sick of doing it and drop it. But then my hand gets worse. I can't trust in my right hand to act independently, but still have hope in the future.

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Nearly two years post stroke and I consistently see incremental improvements in my arm. My hand... I will cop to not focusing on it as I should. I've had modified constraint therapy twice and I know what I SHOULD be doing... involving it in everything. But there's that line of adapting and wanting to get things done and the hand is, in my view, like having a toddler helping you. It takes 20x's as long and you end up doing most of it with your unaffected hand anyway. I'm just not able to focus more than the minimum for this right now. Walking better is my fixation right now. I will switch to my hand in due time. I seem to be a one trick pony with my recovery focus.

 

I do independent workouts at my rehab gym 5x a week now, and I can feel the difference in arm strength and range of motion. They are also nice enough to trust me to use their BTE machine http://www.btetech.com/ and I can see actual number percentages of my improvement. I love that. I check myself on this about once a week and there's always a gain, even if it's 1%...improvement I couldn't perceive myself, but the numbers tell me I'm slowly recovering.

 

Never stop trying. Get on with life but don't lose hope in getting back function.I went into a two month slump/depression this summer and didn't go to the gym and although I didn't make any substantial gains in that time, I did improve slightly according to the numbers when I returned to sloughing away at recovery.The littlest gains can make a huge difference in life, both in attitude and in independence.I think the 6 month - 1 year deadline we all have thrown at us, makes us feel like we fail. Bull...ignore the time tables and the naysayers and keep working toward what you find to be important to you.

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