Advance Cerebral Palsy Treatment Centre


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From its creation in 1996 the charity dedicated itself to find a more advanced form of scientific thinking that would lead to the reversal of the structural and functional abnormalities of cerebral palsy and other brain injuries.

Advance’s unusually optimistic philosophy in the face of the negative approach of medical science had developed steadily from its founder Linda Scotson’s University College, London PhD work. This focused on the respiratory weakness and poor respiratory response to metabolic demand in brain injured children. It incorporated physiology and the bio-mechanics of the micro circulation.

Linda’s motivation developed from the brain injury of her son Doran born in 1978. She spent long daily hours over the years applying the best therapy regimes the world could offer and analysing their theoretical basis and their limitations. During the 1980s she wrote 2 best selling books and began her first research in collaboration with the Institute of Child Health. As a result, Linda developed a working friendship with Professor Patrick Wall Head of Cerebral Studies at University College London. The Professor was impressed by Linda’s innovative way of thinking and encouraged her to undertake a qualifying year in the Psychology Department compressing 3 academic years into one and to follow this with a PhD.

Advance’s therapeutic strategy began to form as Linda investigated breathing in terms of the effects of internal pressure changes on the skeletal, muscular and organ development within the thorax and abdomen and showed that this was dependent on the movement of the diaphragm.

The journey to establish respiration as the underlying generator of human development took over 10 years. Linda’s aim was to eliminate the treatment of symptoms and focus on causal factors. Gradually it became clear that the wide spread of symptoms associated with cerebral palsy were directly related to the children’s weak and abnormal breathing. For example, poor breathing left tissues too weak for the brain to make connections with them, deformed the skeleton and prevented normal movement.

By September 2002 the cause of the abnormal trunkal structure and the weakness and abnormality in the upper respiratory muscles could clearly be attributed to weaknesses in the diaphragm sustained around the time of the brain injury. The approach introduced persuasive evidence that the abnormalities of cerebral palsy and other brain injuries improved as respiration improved. In 2005 Linda decided that to ensure the direction of the principals were one of continued research as well as application she would use her own name to define the therapy.

Parents and their children come to the centre from all over the world to be taught the gentle restorative exercises show encouragingly consistent and predictable improvement as the therapy progresses in every case.

In 2004 to meet international needs, Advance also set-up a now flourishing clinic in South Africa.

In 2005, the French Government invited the charity to France to begin treating a pilot group of children with The Scotson Technique prior to a 2 year study which is hoped to commence in 2006.

In England, Bradford University Physical Therapy Department is at present undertaking a 3-year PhD study of the technique. When the final results are published it is hoped that UK government funding will become available for children receiving the technique which is becoming widely known and respected throughout the world.

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