a blog about raising a daughter with cerebral palsy and learning unexpected lessons along the way

Saturday, December 5, 2009

CME: Day 2

This week was the Cuevas Medek Exercise (CME) clinic at our local therapy center and yesterday was the last day Oia participated as a model for the therapists in training. We were scheduled for Monday, Wednesday, and Friday but there was a change in plans so we were asked to just return on Friday for a treatment plan.

The course was taught by Simona DeMarchi from Canada. As I understand, this was a clinic for Level 1 training and I believe CME certifications go up to Level 4. Simona instructed from a manual and demonstrated CME practices on dolls and on live models when available. Oia's physical therapist attended the clinic which means we have a lot of CME in our future which is music to my ears.

What makes me a believer in CME? As far as I can tell and understand, CME therapy does not manipulate the child's movements, or manually move them, but instead provokes the body into making those movement patterns voluntarily. Each movement that Oia makes during the therapy is initiated by her brain and her muscles and only guided/supported by strategic hand placement of the therapist. The therapy taps into the deepest depths of Oia's brain and triggers those responses and movements necessary to maintain posture and balance. The idea is that the responses will evolve into a more natural and fluid movement pattern over time. Another key component is that CME does not use any assistive devices such a AFO's, walkers, loft strands, etc. The child gets to move as 'freely' as possible.


Monday's session went much better than yesterday's session. Monday's exercises were fairly easy for Oia and she was working with a therapist that she was vaguely familiar with. Yesterday was just the opposite; much more challenging exercises with a stranger...the perfect cocktail for lots and lots of tears. Generally when Oia gets upset during therapy, singing to her will keep the tears at bay. Unfortunately, that trick didn't work so well yesterday but I admire Oia for pushing through the tears, stepping on, and never giving up.


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What do you think?

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