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Extraordinary Stories 3

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Extraordinary Stories

 

AxioBionics is proud to present some truly extraordinary stories of  some of our patients.

David's TripleFlex Story

Hiking has long been a passion of mine. With the worsening of my MS, it has been more difficult for me to hike until I started using TripleFlex.

 

Trekking poles and an AFO have been a great help but the Tripleflex brace has been amazing! I have used it this summer on hikes to Mount St. Helens Volcanic National Monument, the Cascade Range, and the Eagle Cap Wilderness in the Wallowa Mountains. I wish I had it for earlier hiking trips this summer to Mount Baker and to the Olympic National Park.

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I am a big fan of my Tripleflex brace for the following reasons:

  • It helps greatly with my foot drop and keeps me from catching my toe on rocks and roots which can lead to a fall.
  • It provides lift to my affected leg which allows me more freedom of movement.
  • It enables me to hike longer and farther because the lift and support it provides keeps me from fatiguing as quickly.
  • It gives me increased stability which makes me feel more secure on the trail - particularly on more rough terrain. 

Quite simply, the Tripleflex brace has given me more mobility compared to my AFO, and has allowed me to continue my outdoor pursuits! 

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Drew's Wearable Therapy® Story

Drew Clayborn is a 21-year old student at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. He is a mathematical biology major, lives in a dormitory and is active in many school events. 

 

This is a story about a young man who didn't let the results of random events dictate his life. In 2010, Drew was practicing a backflip for a school play at Walled Lake Central High when the unthinkable occurred: the high school sophomore landed wrong and broke his neck. That left him paralyzed and breathing on a ventilator. He was 15 years old at the time. The injury made it impossible to exercise and keep his body in good shape.

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Drew uses Wearable Therapy® 3 to 5 hours a day to manage the effects of paralysis.

“The change was immediate.” He says.

“Since I began using the AxioBionics garments, I have had virtually no loss of muscle. I have very good muscle tone and minimal spasms.”

When asked what pieces of equipment he uses, Drew laughs and says, “All of them! I don’t have to wear any braces on my hands or feet though (to keep the muscles from contracting) because the garments exercise my muscles so well that my fingers and toes have never curled up.”

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In addition to attending classes and living away from home part time, Drew still does several hours of therapy every night and every morning before school. All of this keeps his body as healthy as possible.

“I do five hours of physical therapy with the AxioBionic garments every day. It’s hard work– I won’t lie. But these products give me the ability to sustain my life – no – I guess they give me the ability to live my life.”

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David's Wearable Therapy® Story

“Bracing was attempting to correct my body, but Wearable Therapy® is actually working with it and there’s no fight.  My body simply cooperates when I’m using it."  

"I used my arm about 4% of the time before Wearable Therapy®.  I had to think should I use the arm or just simply use my good hand.  And now I use my affected hand in 80% of my activities. It’s not perfect yet, but the effort it takes to move my arm is becoming easier all the time.”

 

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David was fit with an Upper Extremity BioSleeve 10 years after his brain injury. At the time of the fitting, the left arm was atrophied, contracted and stiff, and cold from a lack of proper circulation. Slowly the arm began to relax, straighten and warm. David uses the left arm now in activities that he thought were not possible. His mother couldn't be happier to see him progress toward greater independence and higher quality of life. She took these pictures on a recent vacation and was happy to watch her son do things we all take for granted like walking on sand or even holding a fishing pole.

Besides having the BioSleeve for the arm, David has a Wearable Therapy system for his left foot for foot drop correction and spasm control and a BioVest for back muscle spasms.

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"I sometimes forget what this technology does, but when David walks without Wearable Therapy® it takes me back to the time when he struggled so much. With the Wearable Therapy® device his ankle doesn’t roll over and collapse. His foot is no longer doing that to the degree it was. It seems to be improving all the time."  

David’s need for many of the medications and treatments he was undergoing has greatly decreased. This technology has lowered the cost to manage David’s condition and yet provided him with unprecedented results that I thought he would never achieve. He plateaued a long time ago. Wearable Therapy® is something that should be offered to patients as early as possible to prevent atrophy and to move the patient along much faster."  

"To watch this giant leap forward take place is just the best feeling.”

Linda (David's mom)

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Videos of David walking without and with his FreeSTEP on

Jesi's Wearable Therapy® Story

On January 18th 2015 Jesi Stracham was in a motorcycle accident that left her paralyzed from the waist down. Her story is an inspiration to us all.

Jesi became the second person to receive the InVivo Therapeutics Neuro-Spinal Scaffold. The Scaffold is a dissolvable device that was designed to be implanted within a spinal cord contusion. It provided support to the remaining nerve cells to facilitate the repair processes in Jesi's spinal cord. 

Jesi has proven to be a fighter. Against all odds and with the assistance of this new technology, Jesi is determined to walk again. She currently uses several Wearable Therapy systems including BioShortX, Lower Extremity BioSleeves, BioBelt Abs and a Contoured BioBelt Lumbar to help prevent muscle spasms and atrophy.

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"I’m Jesi Stracham. I am 24 years old, and living life to the absolute fullest. On January 18th, 2015 I was in a motorcycle accident that left me paralyzed. I am a T5 complete paraplegic. Measuring a whopping 4’3” when sitting straight up, I am often underestimated. As I sat in the hospital, I contemplated what my next move would be; I knew life would never be the same." 

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"My first move was to get back on the race track. The owner of UTV Scene, an off-road media source, reached out to me asking if I would like to race in a Polaris ACE. Being the adrenaline junkie I am, I of course said yes! This opened an incredible door of opportunities to network. After a year of off-road racing adventures, I opened the door to adaptive sports."

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"In a year and half I put 80,000 miles on my car, traveling the country on my own, spreading my story and inspiring others to live their life to the fullest. One of my greatest accomplishments was driving from North Carolina to California and back on my own. I have also competed in the wheelchair MX worlds, the US disabled water ski nationals, joined the adaptive climbing team, competed in a US curling competition, snow skied, and went on an adaptive hunt."

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"I was crowned 2017 Ms. Wheelchair North Carolina, next stop Ms. Wheelchair America! I cannot thank everyone who made this possible enough! And of course my parents. They are hands down my biggest fans and support! I love you mom and dad!!!"

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"In partnership with Justified Cultures, a lifestyle clothing brand out of Arizona, we co-founded the Wheel With Me Foundation, to help newly injured Spinal Cord injury patients. Dundee, the brand owner, also let me create my own line where 100% of the proceeds go to the foundation as well. In addition to my adaptive sports and promoting others, I work part time for Wheelers Medical Supply, a SCI owned and operated catheter supply company. The owner of the company and myself came to agreement that 100% of my commissions from each patient goes to the Wheel With Me foundation."

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"I also spend a lot of my time peer mentoring, giving others support and tips on how to be successful after injury. I used my injury to recreate my life, dedicating it to help others. I simply want you to Wheel with me: Use your obstacles to live life to the fullest."

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Jesi on the climbing wall

Request an evaluation to see if TripleFlex or one of our other foot drop options is appropriate for you.

TripleFlex eligibility can only be evaluated by a physical therapist or orthotist.

Julie18

I tried multiple orthotics for foot drop, but they were uncomfortable and didn't address my hip drop.  Even with orthotics, my walking was labored and very tiring because I couldn't lift my leg from the ground.

TripleFlex picks up my entire leg, and I can walk longer distances without fatiguing.  I feel like I'm back to relying on my left leg for support so my right leg doesn't have to work as hard.

- Julie