By: Dr. John Conde, DC, DACNB Special to the Boca and Delray newspapers
Over the last 10-15 years, there has been an explosion in neuroscience based research and its non-pharmaceutical clinical applications to brain dysfunction. Simply put, understanding how the brain works so that when something goes wrong we can identify the pathways in the brain that malfunction. Why this is such a breakthrough is due to the understanding that the nervous system can change according to the environmental stimuli it is exposed to. So once we can identify where the problem is we can deliver a targeted treatment to “activate” the region and restore function. This “activation”, according to this revolutionary research, is in the number of dendrites or potential synaptic sites between neurons and in the number or quanta of neurotransmitter substance. Hence, this allows us to do more with less. Therefore in relation to multiple sclerosis and most neurological disease this understanding affords clinicians the opportunity to make major changes in the nervous system even if some regions are scarred or injured.
Upon the completion of a comprehensive neurological examination and an accurate identification of the under functioning regions of the nervous system are localized, the neurological rehabilitative process begins. The goals are to increase processing speeds in the brain and nervous system, something that multiple sclerosis compromises through the formation of the scars but can be somewhat overcome through the applications of plasticity.
Two cutting-edge, highly researched tools that are being utilized in the field of neurology are the Interactive Metronome (IM) and the Dynavision D2. These modalities work specifically on processing speeds, brain synchronization, and visuo-motor-spatial awareness so that the brain can communicate with the limbs faster and more efficiently allowing for less fatigue, less stiffness, improved balance, improved coordination, and less pain.
Specifically in reference to the IM, it provides a structured, goal-oriented program that challenges the patient to synchronize a range of whole body exercises to a precise computer-generated beat. The patient attempts to match the rhythmic beat with repetitive motor movements. IM’s game-like features engage the patient with auditory and visual guidance and provide real-time feedback while encouraging him/her to improve their scores.
In regards to the Dynavision D2, it works on visuo-motor, neuro-cognitive and spatial skills as well as on a neurological process termed “efferent copy.” This process engages and integrates two very important regions of the brain, the cerebellum and frontal lobe. These areas of the brain are responsible for everything that makes us human such as problem solving, timing, sequencing, planning, initiating through processes and coordination. The user is required to manually compress targets made up of 64 LED lights that are blinking in a strategically established manner according to the neurological presentation of the person. The information is recorded and attention is placed on speed and sequence.
In conjunction with this, neurophysiologic exercises utilizing specific oculomotor therapies (eye movement), mirror therapy, vestibular (balance) activities, and graded motor imagery (visualization with electrical stimulation placed on the dysfunctional limb) are used to truly enhance the brain’s ability to work effectively. Proper dietary recommendations and supplement recommendations are part of the picture because the brain needs adequate fuel to perform. These recommendations should be discussed at the time of the report of findings with your physician as is the case at the Conde Center for Chiropractic Neurology.
Dr. John Conde is a Board Certified Chiropractic Neurologist, one of only one thousand in the country. He holds diplomate status through the American Chiropractic Neurology Board. He provides specialized care for difficult cases of back neck pain, numbness-tingling, vertigo-dizziness balance disorders, fibromyalgia, migraines, AD/HD, autism, and dyslexia. His office is located at the Atlantic Grove in Delray Beach, FL and can be reached at 561-330-6096, firstname.lastname@example.org, and at www.thecondecenter.com