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

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Piggies, Shoes and AFO's

Oia has had 3 PT sessions this week (one session being a make-up). All sessions this week have been GREAT. Our PT does amazing things with Oia. I recently brought up to her the fact that Oia has begun walking around the living room in bare feet; all within the last couple of weeks. Times are early in the morning before I've dressed her, nap, and after her bath in the evenings. Until now, it used to be that without shoes and AFO's on her feet she would crawl to get to where she wanted to be. Our daredevil, who loves a challenge, decided that AFO's are now optional. This is WONDERFUL but a heart stopper for Rob and I all at the same time; for several reasons. Walking in bare feet looks like an accident waiting to happen. AFO's provide Oia with flat feet and a more stable stance which helps her bear weight more appropriately throughout her entire body. Plus, with AFO's, I can trust that her falls will be backward (on her bottom) instead of forward.

So, this week, our PT decided to assess Oia walking in bare feet.

Pros of bare feet walking (my assessment):

1. good sensory

2. slow, step-through steps

3. fair amount of control

4. can demonstrate some hip extension but still needs work

5. can turn and change direction without falling

6. insight into the future (maybe?)...will she always need braces on her feet?

Cons of bare feet walking (again, my assessment):

1. questionable stability

2. heels up slightly, steps with toes

3. right foot rolls slightly inward over arch

4. needs close supervision, aka. adult needs to be RIGHT. THERE.

See for yourself...all 10 piggies in action! Pretty impressive.

Next video is walking with shoes only, no AFO's. Same pros with shoes as walking with bare feet, but naturally more support and stability with shoes.

And finally, walking with the good ol' faithful AFO's. This is the only way she can walk out of our sight safely and play in an adjoining room. Also, this is the only way she walks outside and in public places (still needs to hold our hands while walking outside). Hip extension is getting better and better with AFO's; in simple terms this means she is standing taller and not compensating her body by bending forward at the hip to seek stability. She still weight-bears more on the left side as right side is weaker but overall she looks fantastic!

Bottom line: SHE CAN WALK!

1 comment:

  1. This is so exciting to hear about all of her progress!!! I can't help but smile the biggest smile to see her walking without her AFOs! You and Rob are doing an amazing job with her!

    Love (and always anxiously awaiting the next post!),