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Adeli Suit: Russian suit helps cerebral palsy patients to strengthen muscles

Dec 16, 2005
By The Birmingham News
ANNA VELASCO - News staff writer

"For a person with cerebral palsy, just sitting up or walking can be an athletic challenge. Muscles are weak, tight or spastic, making alignment of the body for proper movement difficult.

Children's Hospital has just bought six suits developed from Russian technology that help children with cerebral palsy strengthen their muscles and develop proper movement. Some even learn to walk after intensive therapy with the "Adeli Suit."

Making Strides, an Alabama charity dedicated to providing intensive therapy to children with cerebral palsy, gave Children's Hospital $15,000 Thursday to pay for the suits and for training the past two weeks to teach therapists how to use them. The gift allowed Children's Hospital to fly over a Russian doctor who specializes in use of the Adeli Suit.

The charity plans another $20,000 donation to Children's Hospital early next year to buy more suits, at $2,500 each, and to help equip another therapy site at Children's South off Interstate 459, in addition to the hospital therapy department.

Children's started intensive cerebral palsy therapy in 2004 with the help from an initial $15,000 gift from Making Strides. The hospital has provided the three-week, four-hour-daily therapy for 20 patients since then. Therapists used a suit similar to the Adeli and other types of exercises.

"We've seen kids come in not being able to walk and leave being able to," said Lisa Steed, a physical therapist at Children's. "

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