Episode 013 -- Learned Nonuse and a Tie

Video Project

I'm thrilled to announce a video project I've been part of now airs on local TV in Seattle. The Medical Minute is a partnership between King 5 and Swedish Medical Center highlighting the working relationship between care providers and patients at Swedish. I got to share the screen with the always awesome Olivia.  Check it out below.


Learned Nonuse

Neurons that fire together, wire together.

-- Dr. Norman Doidge (and, apparently, several others)

In a few weeks I have one of those rare Seattle events where a tie will be appropriate. So now I need to figure out how to do that. Do I get a clip on, or do I try to learn to tie one-handed?  Clip on seems easy and temporary. One-handed tying would become a lifelong skill and permanent. Do I really want a lifelong solution here? Isn't that just conceding that I won't get my left hand back? I'm not prepared to make that concession.

The brain functions like a network of dirt roads. The ruts in the road make it simple for instructions to flow in a simple path. The stroke wiped out those ruts and roads and it's time to rebuild them. 

This thought process eventually led to a discussion of Shoulder Subluxation and  the work of Edward Taub and Constraint Induced Movement Therapy and the nature of rote learning.

Ultimately I decided to get the clip on tie. I think.

Hack of the Week

Putting on a belt with hemiparesis can be tough. It requires reaching around your body, past your weak arm, without losing your balance.

The solution is to thread your bel through your belt loops before putting on your pants.

This makes it much less likely that you'll fall over.

Where do we go from here?

  • What are your thoughts and experiences with adaptive equipment and learned nonuse? Let us know in the comments here.
  • If you have an Amazon Echo device (affiliate link), please enable the Strokecast skill. Go up to it and say, "Alexa, enable Strokecast."
  • Don't get best...get better.

Here is the latest episode of The Strokecast

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