Injury or illness can sometimes keep us off of our feet for prolonged periods of time. The amount of muscle strength and mass lost can range from mild to catastrophic. Needless to say, neither of these scenarios is very attractive.
Today’s technologies allow for faster recoveries after an illness or injury. More importantly, they can act as a preventative measure. This mind set is rapidly becoming a normal protocol in ICU units. Today’s technologies include ergometers that are built to be used over the hospital bed to move the patients upper and lower extremities in passive, motor assisted or active resistive modes of operation. Keeping the body moving during these periods of bed confinement can have benefits beyond reducing muscle atrophy. Increased blood circulation brings benefits to the renal system and help to reduce edema.Reduced spasticity increases bowel and bladder function, pulmonary function and the mental benefit of seeing or utilizing your extremities in a bed dependent situation can be very positive.
Beyond mechanical intervention there is also electrical stimulation. This stimulation can be as simple as a muscle stimulator that makes a muscle group simply contract and relax over a timed session, to functional electronic stimulation that will stimulate the nerves in a functional manner to promote cycling, crawling, gait and beyond. Some of these systems interface with mechanical devices to offer the best of both worlds.
In closing there are solutions to help you stay on your feet or get back on them ASAP. Please let us know how we can help you, your patients and staff achieve these goals.