Octogenarian shares inspiring journey with Fenland rehab community to mark Stroke Awareness Month – About Your Online Magazine

An octogenarian “hit by six” after losing mobility after a severe stroke, thanked the Fenland rehabilitation center that helped him get up.

Philip Haines, a 88-year-old former secretary of the Anglican Diocese of Peterborough, personally thanked the team at Askham Rehab, a neuro-rehabilitation community in Doddington, before the National Stroke Awareness Month.

Philip spoke after an intensive 16-week rehabilitation program that allowed him to regain mobility on the left side after a stroke in October 2020.


Caused by a blood clot that left part of his brain without oxygen, the stroke left Philip unable to move his left arm and leg. Although the blood clot was successfully removed, the stroke caused Philip to have cognitive problems and difficulty swallowing.

Philip arrived at Askham Rehab from Peterborough City Hospital in November, where he was evaluated by the multidisciplinary team and was placed on a specialized four-month program specific to his needs.

Sara Neaves, clinical head and outpatient service manager at Askham Rehab, said: “Philip has had access to all four of our disciplines; clinical psychology, physiotherapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy. It was clear from the first day that Philip knew exactly what he wanted to achieve. This allowed us to set patient-centered goals with him, ensuring he was part of the process throughout his journey with us. “

Philip was able to make use of the robotics of the family community and of the technology assisted by sensors. He used the MYRO table, a sensor-based surface with interactive applications, to assist the movement of the upper limbs and focus on balance, coordination and cognitive training.

As strokes are a specialized area in Askham Rehab, Philip also performed mirror therapy, practical therapy and functional tasks as part of his personalized program, which soon led to a significant improvement in his mobility.

Sara continued: “Philip was totally independent before the stroke, so he was determined to get up. He quickly improved the mobility of his left upper limb with the use of our robotics and mirror therapy. He also improved his swallowing by means of oral motor techniques and no longer needed thickening in his fluids ”.

Philip, who returned home at the end of April after completing the program, said: “The stroke drove me crazy and changed my life dramatically, but every day I met with a group of very enthusiastic physiotherapists who tried to bring a little bit of life back my left side. “

He continued: “This whole journey has been a completely new experience, it is almost like a rebirth. You always try to be positive, but it is inevitable that you experience periods of discouragement. The team’s enthusiasm helped to lift me during these low points. We got along well, they were very helpful and it was a real group effort to try to bring life back to my muscles ”.

Sara said, “It was extremely gratifying to see Philip go this far. He had a positive outlook on his rehabilitation journey with us since moving. We are very pleased that he can now return. “

Aliyyah-Begum Nasser, director of Askham, said: “Philip’s journey in Askham covers what is Stroke Awareness Month; highlighting strategies to improve the quality of life of people in recovery. “

Paula Fonseca