What We Treat

Treatment of Parkinson’s and Parkinsonian disease is a team effort and should include both a medical neurologist and a functional neurologist. A medical neurologist will support the system with medication. The process of obtaining the right combination of drug therapy can be straightforward or require some tinkering to come up with a regimen that gives you maximum therapeutic benefit while balancing the side effects. Your medical neurologist will take into account disease severity, age, and other medications. They should also take into account your personal preferences.

A board certified chiropractic neurologist (aka functional neurologist) works alongside the medical drug treatment and focuses on gait and balance training, swallowing and speech training, visual training, and various motor training techniques. A functional neurologist uses receptor-based activation and inhibition through neurologic-specific exercises to improve global central nervous system function, which promotes a higher quality of life, increases motor function, reduces the risk of fall and choking, and maintains intellectual function. In addition, dietary modifications are an extremely effective part of managing and slowing the progression of the degenerative process and are always a part of treatment.

Being able to maintain an active lifestyle and exercising regularly is very beneficial for individuals with Parkinson’s. Researchers believe that not only does exercise help maintain and improve some of the hallmark motor symptoms associated with PD, but it is also important in managing depression in PD.

Parkinson’s disease treatment in North Carolina 

Treatment at Carolina Brain Center is unique! Our week-long intensive program is based entirely on the premise of neuroplasticity. Neuroplasticity is the brain’s ability to make new neuronal connections. This is an important concept in the treatment of diseases that are destroying the neuronal connections as seen with PD. In order to create neuroplastic changes, neurons require a specific frequency of firing, intensity of activation, and duration of activation. Further, all of this must happen within a neuron’s metabolic capacity. If neuronal activity exceeds a neuron’s metabolic capacity, transneural degeneration is the result. This is why the cookie-cutter approach is not only sometimes ineffective, but also has the potential to do more harm than good.

A week-long intensive program (Brain Camp) looks different for every patient we treat because every person is unique. Brain Camp runs from Monday through Friday beginning at 10:00 am and ending at 2:00 pm. There are two 30-minute breaks in order to refuel the system and to rest before the next round of treatment. At the conclusion of the week, diagnostics are performed and compared to prior examination results. Throughout the week, our patients marvel at how fast results come. Following Brain Camp, the journey is not over. Patients are sent home with exercises to complete at home on a daily basis. The home program helps to continue progress and to slow the degenerative process. Hour-long follow-up appointments are scheduled to monitor progress.

Answers about Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disease process. The disease results from the malfunction and death of neurons in the brain. Specifically in PD, the neurons affected are in the substantia nigra (SN) of the basal ganglia (BG). The SN produces dopamine, which is the neurotransmitter that sends messages to the part of the brain that controls movement and coordination.

Classic signs of PD include shaking, tremor, rigidity, slowness of movement, difficulty with walking, and problems with balance. People with PD may begin to show more subtle signs long before an official diagnosis is given. Early symptoms include loss of sense of smell, fatigue, excessive saliva, constipation, visual changes, sleep disturbances, lack of facial expressions (hypomimia), mood disorders (such as depression and anxiety), and orthostatic hypotension (low blood pressure when standing up). Dopaminergic medication treatment is helpful.

Atypical PD includes Drug-induced ParkinsonismProgressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP)Corticobasal Degeneration (CBD)Multiple System Atrophy (MSA)Vascular Parkinsonism, and Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). For more answers about atypical Parkinson’s disease click here.

Both genetic and environmental factors are attributed to the cause of PD, but the exact cause is unknown. There is presently no cure for Parkinson’s disease, but treatment options include medication therapy, surgery and several complementary therapies that can help manage symptoms.  Appropriate treatment can keep most patients working and enjoying an active life for several years or even decades.

Tourette’s can be classified from mild to severe. For severe cases, co-management may be best. A combination of medications and functional neurology treatments and strategies offer the best improvement in activities of daily living and overall quality of life.

Dystonias require very specific, targeted treatments. Understanding the complexity of the neurology behind movement disorders enables us to come up with patient specific approaches to reduce the symptoms of dystonia.

Parkinson’s Disease & Parkinsonian type disorders are neurodegenerative disorders that have a devastating effect on a person’s quality of life. In many cases, subtle symptoms show up well before a person is diagnosed with PD. Our goal is to improve function and quality of life. We also work alongside the patient and caregivers as the disease progresses by giving home strategies that will help maintain progress made in the office.

Cerebellar degenerative disorders are tough to deal with; however, we have strategies to help improve quality of life by improving function and giving home strategies to help the patient navigate through life more safely.

Tremors can result from a number of disorders. A full neurological workup and history is paramount to implementing effective, corrective treatments.

Concussions have been poorly managed in years past. However, new technology and research are driving better treatment options. Advances in science means physicians must continue to learn. Dr. Dane has completed roughly 500 hours of training concentrated in concussion. These 500 hours include both classroom time and grand rounds with Dr. Carrick, the “father of functional neurology.” She is interested in developing more effective treatments for concussions. Examining a patient with a concussion includes comparing subjective findings (patient’s answers concerning their health and symptoms) with Videonystagmography (VNG) findings (gaze, fixation, pursuit, saccade, optokinetic, pupillometry, and consensual light reflex) and with neurological exam findings (cerebellar, cranial nerve, cortical). All of this information are important pieces of the puzzle that allow Dr. Dane to build more effective treatment protocols for the concussed patient.  Effective treatments require an accurate diagnosis of what part of the central nervous system is being affected. Moreover, after the level of the lesion has been determined, it is important to know how the site, pathway, or neural integrator is being affected, which determines the function of the aforementioned areas. Injured areas display dysfunction in a number of ways including, but not limited to, hyperfunction, absent function, hypofunction, misfiring, and poor integration.

According to the CDC:

Concussions, also known as mild traumatic brain injuries (MTBI), account for roughly 75% of all traumatic brain injuries each year.

Almost half a million ER visits for TBI are children age 0-14.
Annual estimation of ER visits for TBI related to sports is 173,285.
Due to increased awareness, ER visits for sport-related TBI has increased 60% over the past decade.

Visit the CDC’s “Head’s Up” homepage for more information about sports related TBI and MTBI.

Visit the National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities for more information about TBI and MTBI.

Recovering from a traumatic brain injury whether life threatening or concussion is sometimes a long road. Regarding concussions, we manage the entire recovery process.
Concussions should never be treated lightly. According to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, there is no such thing as a mild concussion. Approximately 50% of our patient base is made up of people who have suffered from one or more concussions. No two concussion patients are alike. Cookie-cutter treatments will fail many mTBI patients. Post concussion symptoms can include, double or blurry vision, headaches, anxiety, depression, dizziness, and the sense of losing control over one’s life. Having worked with professional and Olympic athletes, we are keenly aware of how devastating these injuries can be to one’s future. Restoring function gets you back in the game of life not just back on the ice or field.

For more significant traumatic brain injuries, which are often accompanied with other physical injuries, our work begins after surgery and/or hospitalization. Each unique case can present a host of issues that need to be treated. Our one-on-one approach allows us to custom tailor treatment protocols for each individual. We seek to establish a strong neurological foundation upon which other therapies (e.g., occupational, speech, physical) can build resulting in better outcomes.

PTSD can be a devastating symptom of traumatic brain injury. We have some very effective strategies to help reduce the symptoms of PTSD. Here is a great article about how effective the strategies are in restoring mental health.

Our diagnostics: Videonystagmography (VNG), Saccadometer, Computerized Posturography (CAPS), and physical neurological examination
Our therapeutics: Vision, Motor, Sensory, and Vestibular modality protocols specific for each patient to ensure positive outcomes.

The Child’s Brain Explained

The child’s brain has two hemispheres (the Left and Right Cortex). The corpus callosum is the structure deep in the brain that connects the right and left hemispheres of the cerebrum, coordinating the functions of the two halves. When the corpus callosum is missing due to agenesis or surgical intervention, the hemispheres operate independently. Current research indicates the makeup of all of the child’s issues can be explained by a combination of unusually strong skills in one hemisphere combined with unusually weak skills in the other hemisphere. Developmental disorders such as ADHD, Autism Spectrum Disorders, OCD, and Tourettes are a result of a weak right hemisphere, while Dyslexia, LD, processing Disorders and language disorders are a result of a weak left hemisphere.

What makes our treatment different is that we utilize hemispheric treatment to facilitate the development of the weak hemisphere. The brain is very plastic, meaning that it is very changeable. The adaptability of the brain is a property that must be utilized in treatment very specifically. When one hemisphere is weak, the stronger hemisphere will automatically begin to take over responsibilities and the brain will begin to disassociate from the weaker side. This is why we see neglect syndromes with children who have hemispheric imbalances. Because the brain reacts in this manner, if we drive the whole brain, in other words, if we treat both hemispheres together, we run the risk of driving a bigger gap in development between the two hemispheres. However, if we only stimulate, or drive, the weak hemisphere in treatment, we encourage the gap to close!

Autism, ADD, ADHD& Learning Disabilities

It is estimated that 26% of children have some type of learning disability. This is an alarming number. The sharp increase that has been seen over the years can be explained by the concept of epigenetics. In short, the term “epigenetics” refers to changes that occur in a population that change the genetic expression of individuals. The causes of epigenetic changes are environmental factors. Moreover, epigenetic changes seem to increase in intensity with each generation.

Are there treatments available for Autism, ADD, ADHD? Medications? Behavioral therapy? The answer is YES, there are treatments available, but the treatments are not limited to pharmaceutical drugs or behavior modification.

In general, our treatments for all types of learning disabilities are based solely in functional neurology, functional biochemistry, and functional nutrition, hence, our overall FUNCTIONAL HEALTHCARE APPROACH. Treatments are tailored specifically to engage weakened neurological pathways in either the right or left hemisphere of the brain, to reduce systemic inflammation, and to create a better chemical environment for brain development and function.

The issue America faces now is finding physicians who are trained to diagnose the weakness and to pull together a tailored protocol to make permanent changes in the brain. The good news is that you have found a physician who is trained to work with these children. At our office, we work with a number of childhood developmental disorders. In 12 weeks, we can make significant and permanent changes in your child.

In a time where special education services are being cut, parents feel the pinch. A typical family will spend over $10,000 a year on special food and clothing items, various therapies, sitters or caregivers, and lost work. Many families must resort to one income due to one parent having to give up work in order to provide the extra care necessary for their child.

Questions to consider:

1. Is the problem getting better or worse?
2. What are some of the things your child’s special needs prevent you from enjoying right now?
3. What does your situation and your child’s situation look like 5 years from now, 15 years from now, and even 30 years from now?
4. As an adult, will your child be able to live on his/her own? Hold a job? Live assistance free?
5. If help is available, are you ready for it?

By the time many parents find our office, they have spent literally tens of thousands of dollars on behavior and pharmaceutical treatments that have not worked! They are frustrated, exhausted, and desperate. If you or someone you know has a child with any kind of developmental disorder, please contact our office to speak directly with the doctor!

What Causes DevelopmentalDisorders?

Childhood Developmental Disorders such as ADHD, Dyslexia, Asperger’s, and Autism Spectrum Disorders including, OCD, Tourette’s, and PDD, share many common learning disabilities and behavioral disorders. However, we keep in mind that each disorder is complex in nature, involving every system of the body.

Interestingly, while childhood developmental disorders may manifest with a variety of symptoms, the root cause of these dysfunctions is common: a brain imbalance. When the left and right hemispheres of the brain are not electrically balanced or synchronized, a diagnosis of functional disconnection syndrome is used. When a child has a functional disconnection between the right and left hemisphere of the brain, a child will exhibit normal to high functioning skills associated with one hemisphere and dampened to severely limited skills associated with the other hemisphere. Worsening signs and symptoms as the child continues to age appears to be a result of one side of the brain maturing faster than the other does.

Children with developmental disorders display a combination of different symptoms that include sensory, motor, cognitive, academic, emotional, immune challenges, and digestive challenges. Unfortunately, most professionals are still approaching and treating the child as though they have a single condition. Additionally, many times these children are being labeled subjectively (mainly through parental assessments) and are not being neurologically and objectively evaluated.

A thorough neurological evaluation will reveal which hemisphere is underdeveloped and will evaluate neurological pathways for over activity and under activity. Specific tests include, but are not limited to, testing for primitive reflexes, testing of cranial nerve function, cerebellar function, and frontal eye fields, and even routine blood work. Once the objective data is collected, a treatment plan can be tailored to stimulate and promote hemispheric integration or synchronization thus enabling the brain to work as a whole. With no treatment, the weak side gets weaker and the strong side becomes dominant which can result in neglect syndromes. However, with specific hemispheric treatment, the weak side can be encouraged to catch up to the dominant side.

Treatment Approach of Childhood Developmental Disorders

Hemispheric Integration – The stimulation and training of specific neurological pathways to encourage neuroplasticity resulting in academic and social behavioral changes.

Neurosensory – The stimulation of sensory pathways to encourage neuro-plasticity resulting in motor and cognitive changes.

Functional Biochemistry – The use of specific natural compounds that are proven to support neurological, immunological, and digestive processes.

Nutritional Counseling – The purpose is to help you implement the best diet for your child’s needs based upon clinical lab results.

A thorough neurological evaluation will reveal which hemisphere is underdeveloped and will evaluate neurological pathways for over activity and under activity. Specific tests include, but are not limited to, testing for primitive reflexes, testing of cranial nerve function, testing of cerebellar function, testing of frontal eye fields, and even routine blood work. Once the objective data is collected, a treatment plan can be tailored to stimulate and promote hemispheric integration or synchronization thus enabling the brain to work as a whole. With no treatment, the weak side gets weaker and the strong side becomes dominant, which can result in neglect syndromes. However, with specific hemispheric treatment, the weak side can be encouraged to catch up to the dominant side.

Left Hemisphere of Brain

Normal Functions

Verbal communication, Reading, Mathematical calculation, Musical ability
Approach behavior (which is really about desire)
It is the motivation to do things.
Social motivation
Details and facts (local coherence)
Female brain is better developed on the left side.
Pattern recognition skills. Computers are a good fit with the left brain.
Sameness
Immune activation
Fine motor skills
High frequency sound and light

Under Activation

Poor reading
Delayed speech
Poor auditory processing
Poor object identification
Poor verbal communication skills
Depression
Poor math operations
Graphomotor problems
Cross laterality
Auotonomic dysregulation
Decreasesd immune response
Miss small details
Poor motivation

Possible Diagnoses

Dyslexia
Processing disorder
Language disorders

Right Hemisphere of Brain

Normal Functions of Right Hemisphere of Brain

Nonverbal communication
Math reasoning
Reading comprehension
Spatial cognition, feeling your own body, proprioception
Attention
Self-Control, impulsive behavior
Seeing the big picture, global coherence
Facial recognition
Social skills
Withdrawal behavior
Stopping any activity,
May also control fear anxiety
Novel (new) things are right brain
Immune suppression
Low frequency sound and light
Gross motor, eyes, posture, big muscles, rhythm

Under Activation

Can cause the following:
Poor spatial orientation
Inappropriate social behavior
Miss big picture
Cannot reflect on own mental processes
Poor nonverbal communication skills
Poor attention
Impulsivity
Perseverative behavior and movements
Poor reading comprehension and pragmatic skills
Overactive immune response (auto-immunity)
Poor gross-motor skills and development
Poor math reasoning
Anxiety

Possible Diagnoses

Autism
Asperger’s
ADHD
Tourettes
OCD

Primitive Reflexes

Primitive reflexes are automatic, involuntary movements essential to a baby’s survival in the first few weeks of life. These reflexes are quickly inhibited as higher centers of the brain develop and voluntary responses become dominant. Primitive reflexes persisting beyond 6-12 months of life are considered abnormal.

Normal neural development shows a progressive inhibition of the primitive reflexes and progressive development of new skills such as gross motor skills, fine motor skills, crawling, walking, balance, coordination, and speech. Children have a number of persistent primitive reflexes present with neuro-developmental disorders. The severity of the neuro-developmental delay depends on the strength of the persistent primitive reflex and on the number of persistent primitive reflexes, as well as other factors.

Below you will find common signs and symptoms associated with a persistent primitive reflex. The list is not exhaustive or complete but is intended to offer some insight regarding the importance of primitive reflex testing and remediation.

Moro Reflex – School Problems

The Moro Reflex emerges at 9 weeks in utero and is the earliest form of “fight or flight” (reaction to stress) which is fully present at birth and is usually inhibited between 2-4 months of life.

1. Over reactive
2. Hypersensitive
3. Stimulus bound
4. Difficulty with ball games

Spinal Galant Reflex – School Problems

The Spinal Galant emerges at 20 weeks in utero, is actively present at birth, and is inhibited by 3-9 months. If fully retained, or only retained on one side, it may affect posture, gait, and other forms of locomotion and is responsible for fidgeting, bedwetting, poor concentration and short-term memory, and hip rotation to one side when walking. When retained it can interfere with the development of amphibian and segmental rolling reflexes.

1. Inability to sit still or remain silent
2. Poor concentration
3. Continued bedwetting above the age of 5 yrs

Asymmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex – School Problems

Asymmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex (ATNR) emerges 18 weeks in utero to stimulate the balance mechanism and to increase neural connections. It assists in and is reinforced by the birth process. ATNR is fully present at birth and develops eye-hand coordination, trains one side of the body at a time, and extends the ability to focus from 17 cm to arms length. It is inhibited by about 6 months of life (so that focus on distant objects can develop). It ensures free passage of air when baby is in the prone position and increases extensor muscle tone.

1. Handwriting: expression of ideas in written form
2. Eye tracking problems; difficulty crossing the midline
3. Ambilaterality or cross laterality

Tonic Labyrinthine Reflex – School Problems

The Tonic Labyrinthine Reflex (TLR) Forwards emerges in utero, is fully present at birth, is inhibited by 4 months, and is closely linked to the Moro as both are vestibular in origin and activated by movement of the head. When retained it can lead to spatial problems, motion sickness, poor posture & muscle tone, visual perceptual difficulties, poor sequencing skills, and a poor sense of time. The Tonic Labyrinthine Reflex (TLR) Backwards emerges at birth and is inhibited gradually from 6 weeks to 3 years.  It is involved in the simultaneous development of postural reflexes, the symmetrical tonic neck reflex, and the Landau reflex, which can result in poor balance and coordination as well as organizational skills and stiff jerky movements if retained.

1. Poor balance, rigid or floppy muscles (seen in PE or in running)
2. Oculo-motor dysfunction, tracking, convergence, reestablishment of binocular vision
3. Visual perceptual difficulties
4. Possible auditory problems
5. Organizational problems
6. Poor sense of time and rhythm

Symmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex – School Problems

The Symmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex (Flexion & Extension) emerges at about 6-9 months of life and is inhibited about 9-11 months. If retained, it affects posture, hand-eye coordination, and swimming skills. It also results in the tendency to slump when sitting at a desk, an ape-like walk, “clumsy child” syndrome, difficulties with binocular vision, slowness at copying tasks, and messy eating habits.

1. Posture lies on desk when writing
2. Poor eye-hand coordination
3. Problems with refocusing from far to near distance
4. Clumsy

General symptoms are often dismissed by doctors. This is why we do a thorough neurological evaluation on every patient. The goal is to put the puzzle pieces together in order to reveal a picture of what is going on in a person’s nervous system and other systems of the body.

If you are not sure as to whether or not we can help you, all you need to do is fill out our consultation request form and then Dr. Dane will call you personally to discuss your case.

We work with neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and Dementia. Our seniors see improvements in memory and motor control. Enhancing one’s quality of life is not only a blessing to the patient, but also a blessing for their family.

The examination will help us identify what parts of the brain are working well and what parts of the brain are not working so well. The goal of treatment is to use the good to help treat the bad, which results in improved neurological function. The long-term goal is to slow the progression if we can and to give home strategies to help keep the patient as safe as we can.

Our goal is to work with the patient and caregivers to create home strategies to reduce the frequency and intensity of seizure activity. In office, we identify triggers, both physical and chemical. Treatments are designed to help strengthen the affected areas in order to reduce the effects of seizures.

Some seizure disorders will not respond to our approach. However, we will know that either very early on in treatment or at the time of the exam.

We treat many patients from birth to the elderly who have suffered a stroke. Our examination and diagnostic testing is designed to reveal what parts of the brain have been affected by the stroke so that we can begin implementing rehabilitation strategies. We have successfully treated patients who recently suffered a stroke and those who suffered a stroke long ago.

Cerebral palsy can be mild to severe. Children who are functioning well may have some learning disabilities resulting from their stroke. We help children reach their academic and physical potential.

Treatment of Parkinson’s and Parkinsonian disease is a team effort and should include both a medical neurologist and a functional neurologist. A medical neurologist will support the system with medication. The process of obtaining the right combination of drug therapy can be straightforward or require some tinkering to come up with a regimen that gives you maximum therapeutic benefit while balancing the side effects. Your medical neurologist will take into account disease severity, age, and other medications. They should also take into account your personal preferences.

A board certified chiropractic neurologist (aka functional neurologist) works alongside the medical drug treatment and focuses on gait and balance training, swallowing and speech training, visual training, and various motor training techniques. A functional neurologist uses receptor-based activation and inhibition through neurologic-specific exercises to improve global central nervous system function, which promotes a higher quality of life, increases motor function, reduces the risk of fall and choking, and maintains intellectual function. In addition, dietary modifications are an extremely effective part of managing and slowing the progression of the degenerative process and are always a part of treatment.

Being able to maintain an active lifestyle and exercising regularly is very beneficial for individuals with Parkinson’s. Researchers believe that not only does exercise help maintain and improve some of the hallmark motor symptoms associated with PD, but it is also important in managing depression in PD.

Parkinson’s disease treatment in North Carolina 

Treatment at Carolina Brain Center is unique! Our week-long intensive program is based entirely on the premise of neuroplasticity. Neuroplasticity is the brain’s ability to make new neuronal connections. This is an important concept in the treatment of diseases that are destroying the neuronal connections as seen with PD. In order to create neuroplastic changes, neurons require a specific frequency of firing, intensity of activation, and duration of activation. Further, all of this must happen within a neuron’s metabolic capacity. If neuronal activity exceeds a neuron’s metabolic capacity, transneural degeneration is the result. This is why the cookie-cutter approach is not only sometimes ineffective, but also has the potential to do more harm than good.

A week-long intensive program (Brain Camp) looks different for every patient we treat because every person is unique. Brain Camp runs from Monday through Friday beginning at 10:00 am and ending at 2:00 pm. There are two 30-minute breaks in order to refuel the system and to rest before the next round of treatment. At the conclusion of the week, diagnostics are performed and compared to prior examination results. Throughout the week, our patients marvel at how fast results come. Following Brain Camp, the journey is not over. Patients are sent home with exercises to complete at home on a daily basis. The home program helps to continue progress and to slow the degenerative process. Hour-long follow-up appointments are scheduled to monitor progress.

Answers about Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disease process. The disease results from the malfunction and death of neurons in the brain. Specifically in PD, the neurons affected are in the substantia nigra (SN) of the basal ganglia (BG). The SN produces dopamine, which is the neurotransmitter that sends messages to the part of the brain that controls movement and coordination.

Classic signs of PD include shaking, tremor, rigidity, slowness of movement, difficulty with walking, and problems with balance. People with PD may begin to show more subtle signs long before an official diagnosis is given. Early symptoms include loss of sense of smell, fatigue, excessive saliva, constipation, visual changes, sleep disturbances, lack of facial expressions (hypomimia), mood disorders (such as depression and anxiety), and orthostatic hypotension (low blood pressure when standing up). Dopaminergic medication treatment is helpful.

Atypical PD includes Drug-induced ParkinsonismProgressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP)Corticobasal Degeneration (CBD)Multiple System Atrophy (MSA)Vascular Parkinsonism, and Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). For more answers about atypical Parkinson’s disease click here.

Both genetic and environmental factors are attributed to the cause of PD, but the exact cause is unknown. There is presently no cure for Parkinson’s disease, but treatment options include medication therapy, surgery and several complementary therapies that can help manage symptoms.  Appropriate treatment can keep most patients working and enjoying an active life for several years or even decades.

Tourette’s can be classified from mild to severe. For severe cases, co-management may be best. A combination of medications and functional neurology treatments and strategies offer the best improvement in activities of daily living and overall quality of life.

Dystonias require very specific, targeted treatments. Understanding the complexity of the neurology behind movement disorders enables us to come up with patient specific approaches to reduce the symptoms of dystonia.

Parkinson’s Disease & Parkinsonian type disorders are neurodegenerative disorders that have a devastating effect on a person’s quality of life. In many cases, subtle symptoms show up well before a person is diagnosed with PD. Our goal is to improve function and quality of life. We also work alongside the patient and caregivers as the disease progresses by giving home strategies that will help maintain progress made in the office.

Cerebellar degenerative disorders are tough to deal with; however, we have strategies to help improve quality of life by improving function and giving home strategies to help the patient navigate through life more safely.

Tremors can result from a number of disorders. A full neurological workup and history is paramount to implementing effective, corrective treatments.

Concussions have been poorly managed in years past. However, new technology and research are driving better treatment options. Advances in science means physicians must continue to learn. Dr. Dane has completed roughly 500 hours of training concentrated in concussion. These 500 hours include both classroom time and grand rounds with Dr. Carrick, the “father of functional neurology.” She is interested in developing more effective treatments for concussions. Examining a patient with a concussion includes comparing subjective findings (patient’s answers concerning their health and symptoms) with Videonystagmography (VNG) findings (gaze, fixation, pursuit, saccade, optokinetic, pupillometry, and consensual light reflex) and with neurological exam findings (cerebellar, cranial nerve, cortical). All of this information are important pieces of the puzzle that allow Dr. Dane to build more effective treatment protocols for the concussed patient.  Effective treatments require an accurate diagnosis of what part of the central nervous system is being affected. Moreover, after the level of the lesion has been determined, it is important to know how the site, pathway, or neural integrator is being affected, which determines the function of the aforementioned areas. Injured areas display dysfunction in a number of ways including, but not limited to, hyperfunction, absent function, hypofunction, misfiring, and poor integration.

According to the CDC:

Concussions, also known as mild traumatic brain injuries (MTBI), account for roughly 75% of all traumatic brain injuries each year.

Almost half a million ER visits for TBI are children age 0-14.
Annual estimation of ER visits for TBI related to sports is 173,285.
Due to increased awareness, ER visits for sport-related TBI has increased 60% over the past decade.

Visit the CDC’s “Head’s Up” homepage for more information about sports related TBI and MTBI.

Visit the National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities for more information about TBI and MTBI.

Recovering from a traumatic brain injury whether life threatening or concussion is sometimes a long road. Regarding concussions, we manage the entire recovery process.
Concussions should never be treated lightly. According to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, there is no such thing as a mild concussion. Approximately 50% of our patient base is made up of people who have suffered from one or more concussions. No two concussion patients are alike. Cookie-cutter treatments will fail many mTBI patients. Post concussion symptoms can include, double or blurry vision, headaches, anxiety, depression, dizziness, and the sense of losing control over one’s life. Having worked with professional and Olympic athletes, we are keenly aware of how devastating these injuries can be to one’s future. Restoring function gets you back in the game of life not just back on the ice or field.

For more significant traumatic brain injuries, which are often accompanied with other physical injuries, our work begins after surgery and/or hospitalization. Each unique case can present a host of issues that need to be treated. Our one-on-one approach allows us to custom tailor treatment protocols for each individual. We seek to establish a strong neurological foundation upon which other therapies (e.g., occupational, speech, physical) can build resulting in better outcomes.

PTSD can be a devastating symptom of traumatic brain injury. We have some very effective strategies to help reduce the symptoms of PTSD. Here is a great article about how effective the strategies are in restoring mental health.

Our diagnostics: Videonystagmography (VNG), Saccadometer, Computerized Posturography (CAPS), and physical neurological examination
Our therapeutics: Vision, Motor, Sensory, and Vestibular modality protocols specific for each patient to ensure positive outcomes.

The Child’s Brain Explained

The child’s brain has two hemispheres (the Left and Right Cortex). The corpus callosum is the structure deep in the brain that connects the right and left hemispheres of the cerebrum, coordinating the functions of the two halves. When the corpus callosum is missing due to agenesis or surgical intervention, the hemispheres operate independently. Current research indicates the makeup of all of the child’s issues can be explained by a combination of unusually strong skills in one hemisphere combined with unusually weak skills in the other hemisphere. Developmental disorders such as ADHD, Autism Spectrum Disorders, OCD, and Tourettes are a result of a weak right hemisphere, while Dyslexia, LD, processing Disorders and language disorders are a result of a weak left hemisphere.

What makes our treatment different is that we utilize hemispheric treatment to facilitate the development of the weak hemisphere. The brain is very plastic, meaning that it is very changeable. The adaptability of the brain is a property that must be utilized in treatment very specifically. When one hemisphere is weak, the stronger hemisphere will automatically begin to take over responsibilities and the brain will begin to disassociate from the weaker side. This is why we see neglect syndromes with children who have hemispheric imbalances. Because the brain reacts in this manner, if we drive the whole brain, in other words, if we treat both hemispheres together, we run the risk of driving a bigger gap in development between the two hemispheres. However, if we only stimulate, or drive, the weak hemisphere in treatment, we encourage the gap to close!

Autism, ADD, ADHD& Learning Disabilities

It is estimated that 26% of children have some type of learning disability. This is an alarming number. The sharp increase that has been seen over the years can be explained by the concept of epigenetics. In short, the term “epigenetics” refers to changes that occur in a population that change the genetic expression of individuals. The causes of epigenetic changes are environmental factors. Moreover, epigenetic changes seem to increase in intensity with each generation.

Are there treatments available for Autism, ADD, ADHD? Medications? Behavioral therapy? The answer is YES, there are treatments available, but the treatments are not limited to pharmaceutical drugs or behavior modification.

In general, our treatments for all types of learning disabilities are based solely in functional neurology, functional biochemistry, and functional nutrition, hence, our overall FUNCTIONAL HEALTHCARE APPROACH. Treatments are tailored specifically to engage weakened neurological pathways in either the right or left hemisphere of the brain, to reduce systemic inflammation, and to create a better chemical environment for brain development and function.

The issue America faces now is finding physicians who are trained to diagnose the weakness and to pull together a tailored protocol to make permanent changes in the brain. The good news is that you have found a physician who is trained to work with these children. At our office, we work with a number of childhood developmental disorders. In 12 weeks, we can make significant and permanent changes in your child.

In a time where special education services are being cut, parents feel the pinch. A typical family will spend over $10,000 a year on special food and clothing items, various therapies, sitters or caregivers, and lost work. Many families must resort to one income due to one parent having to give up work in order to provide the extra care necessary for their child.

Questions to consider:

1. Is the problem getting better or worse?
2. What are some of the things your child’s special needs prevent you from enjoying right now?
3. What does your situation and your child’s situation look like 5 years from now, 15 years from now, and even 30 years from now?
4. As an adult, will your child be able to live on his/her own? Hold a job? Live assistance free?
5. If help is available, are you ready for it?

By the time many parents find our office, they have spent literally tens of thousands of dollars on behavior and pharmaceutical treatments that have not worked! They are frustrated, exhausted, and desperate. If you or someone you know has a child with any kind of developmental disorder, please contact our office to speak directly with the doctor!

What Causes DevelopmentalDisorders?

Childhood Developmental Disorders such as ADHD, Dyslexia, Asperger’s, and Autism Spectrum Disorders including, OCD, Tourette’s, and PDD, share many common learning disabilities and behavioral disorders. However, we keep in mind that each disorder is complex in nature, involving every system of the body.

Interestingly, while childhood developmental disorders may manifest with a variety of symptoms, the root cause of these dysfunctions is common: a brain imbalance. When the left and right hemispheres of the brain are not electrically balanced or synchronized, a diagnosis of functional disconnection syndrome is used. When a child has a functional disconnection between the right and left hemisphere of the brain, a child will exhibit normal to high functioning skills associated with one hemisphere and dampened to severely limited skills associated with the other hemisphere. Worsening signs and symptoms as the child continues to age appears to be a result of one side of the brain maturing faster than the other does.

Children with developmental disorders display a combination of different symptoms that include sensory, motor, cognitive, academic, emotional, immune challenges, and digestive challenges. Unfortunately, most professionals are still approaching and treating the child as though they have a single condition. Additionally, many times these children are being labeled subjectively (mainly through parental assessments) and are not being neurologically and objectively evaluated.

A thorough neurological evaluation will reveal which hemisphere is underdeveloped and will evaluate neurological pathways for over activity and under activity. Specific tests include, but are not limited to, testing for primitive reflexes, testing of cranial nerve function, cerebellar function, and frontal eye fields, and even routine blood work. Once the objective data is collected, a treatment plan can be tailored to stimulate and promote hemispheric integration or synchronization thus enabling the brain to work as a whole. With no treatment, the weak side gets weaker and the strong side becomes dominant which can result in neglect syndromes. However, with specific hemispheric treatment, the weak side can be encouraged to catch up to the dominant side.

Treatment Approach of Childhood Developmental Disorders

Hemispheric Integration – The stimulation and training of specific neurological pathways to encourage neuroplasticity resulting in academic and social behavioral changes.

Neurosensory – The stimulation of sensory pathways to encourage neuro-plasticity resulting in motor and cognitive changes.

Functional Biochemistry – The use of specific natural compounds that are proven to support neurological, immunological, and digestive processes.

Nutritional Counseling – The purpose is to help you implement the best diet for your child’s needs based upon clinical lab results.

A thorough neurological evaluation will reveal which hemisphere is underdeveloped and will evaluate neurological pathways for over activity and under activity. Specific tests include, but are not limited to, testing for primitive reflexes, testing of cranial nerve function, testing of cerebellar function, testing of frontal eye fields, and even routine blood work. Once the objective data is collected, a treatment plan can be tailored to stimulate and promote hemispheric integration or synchronization thus enabling the brain to work as a whole. With no treatment, the weak side gets weaker and the strong side becomes dominant, which can result in neglect syndromes. However, with specific hemispheric treatment, the weak side can be encouraged to catch up to the dominant side.

Left Hemisphere of Brain

Normal Functions

Verbal communication, Reading, Mathematical calculation, Musical ability
Approach behavior (which is really about desire)
It is the motivation to do things.
Social motivation
Details and facts (local coherence)
Female brain is better developed on the left side.
Pattern recognition skills. Computers are a good fit with the left brain.
Sameness
Immune activation
Fine motor skills
High frequency sound and light

Under Activation

Poor reading
Delayed speech
Poor auditory processing
Poor object identification
Poor verbal communication skills
Depression
Poor math operations
Graphomotor problems
Cross laterality
Auotonomic dysregulation
Decreasesd immune response
Miss small details
Poor motivation

Possible Diagnoses

Dyslexia
Processing disorder
Language disorders

Right Hemisphere of Brain

Normal Functions of Right Hemisphere of Brain

Nonverbal communication
Math reasoning
Reading comprehension
Spatial cognition, feeling your own body, proprioception
Attention
Self-Control, impulsive behavior
Seeing the big picture, global coherence
Facial recognition
Social skills
Withdrawal behavior
Stopping any activity,
May also control fear anxiety
Novel (new) things are right brain
Immune suppression
Low frequency sound and light
Gross motor, eyes, posture, big muscles, rhythm

Under Activation

Can cause the following:
Poor spatial orientation
Inappropriate social behavior
Miss big picture
Cannot reflect on own mental processes
Poor nonverbal communication skills
Poor attention
Impulsivity
Perseverative behavior and movements
Poor reading comprehension and pragmatic skills
Overactive immune response (auto-immunity)
Poor gross-motor skills and development
Poor math reasoning
Anxiety

Possible Diagnoses

Autism
Asperger’s
ADHD
Tourettes
OCD

Primitive Reflexes

Primitive reflexes are automatic, involuntary movements essential to a baby’s survival in the first few weeks of life. These reflexes are quickly inhibited as higher centers of the brain develop and voluntary responses become dominant. Primitive reflexes persisting beyond 6-12 months of life are considered abnormal.

Normal neural development shows a progressive inhibition of the primitive reflexes and progressive development of new skills such as gross motor skills, fine motor skills, crawling, walking, balance, coordination, and speech. Children have a number of persistent primitive reflexes present with neuro-developmental disorders. The severity of the neuro-developmental delay depends on the strength of the persistent primitive reflex and on the number of persistent primitive reflexes, as well as other factors.

Below you will find common signs and symptoms associated with a persistent primitive reflex. The list is not exhaustive or complete but is intended to offer some insight regarding the importance of primitive reflex testing and remediation.

Moro Reflex – School Problems

The Moro Reflex emerges at 9 weeks in utero and is the earliest form of “fight or flight” (reaction to stress) which is fully present at birth and is usually inhibited between 2-4 months of life.

1. Over reactive
2. Hypersensitive
3. Stimulus bound
4. Difficulty with ball games

Spinal Galant Reflex – School Problems

The Spinal Galant emerges at 20 weeks in utero, is actively present at birth, and is inhibited by 3-9 months. If fully retained, or only retained on one side, it may affect posture, gait, and other forms of locomotion and is responsible for fidgeting, bedwetting, poor concentration and short-term memory, and hip rotation to one side when walking. When retained it can interfere with the development of amphibian and segmental rolling reflexes.

1. Inability to sit still or remain silent
2. Poor concentration
3. Continued bedwetting above the age of 5 yrs

Asymmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex – School Problems

Asymmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex (ATNR) emerges 18 weeks in utero to stimulate the balance mechanism and to increase neural connections. It assists in and is reinforced by the birth process. ATNR is fully present at birth and develops eye-hand coordination, trains one side of the body at a time, and extends the ability to focus from 17 cm to arms length. It is inhibited by about 6 months of life (so that focus on distant objects can develop). It ensures free passage of air when baby is in the prone position and increases extensor muscle tone.

1. Handwriting: expression of ideas in written form
2. Eye tracking problems; difficulty crossing the midline
3. Ambilaterality or cross laterality

Tonic Labyrinthine Reflex – School Problems

The Tonic Labyrinthine Reflex (TLR) Forwards emerges in utero, is fully present at birth, is inhibited by 4 months, and is closely linked to the Moro as both are vestibular in origin and activated by movement of the head. When retained it can lead to spatial problems, motion sickness, poor posture & muscle tone, visual perceptual difficulties, poor sequencing skills, and a poor sense of time. The Tonic Labyrinthine Reflex (TLR) Backwards emerges at birth and is inhibited gradually from 6 weeks to 3 years.  It is involved in the simultaneous development of postural reflexes, the symmetrical tonic neck reflex, and the Landau reflex, which can result in poor balance and coordination as well as organizational skills and stiff jerky movements if retained.

1. Poor balance, rigid or floppy muscles (seen in PE or in running)
2. Oculo-motor dysfunction, tracking, convergence, reestablishment of binocular vision
3. Visual perceptual difficulties
4. Possible auditory problems
5. Organizational problems
6. Poor sense of time and rhythm

Symmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex – School Problems

The Symmetrical Tonic Neck Reflex (Flexion & Extension) emerges at about 6-9 months of life and is inhibited about 9-11 months. If retained, it affects posture, hand-eye coordination, and swimming skills. It also results in the tendency to slump when sitting at a desk, an ape-like walk, “clumsy child” syndrome, difficulties with binocular vision, slowness at copying tasks, and messy eating habits.

1. Posture lies on desk when writing
2. Poor eye-hand coordination
3. Problems with refocusing from far to near distance
4. Clumsy

General symptoms are often dismissed by doctors. This is why we do a thorough neurological evaluation on every patient. The goal is to put the puzzle pieces together in order to reveal a picture of what is going on in a person’s nervous system and other systems of the body.

If you are not sure as to whether or not we can help you, all you need to do is fill out our consultation request form and then Dr. Dane will call you personally to discuss your case.

We work with neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and Dementia. Our seniors see improvements in memory and motor control. Enhancing one’s quality of life is not only a blessing to the patient, but also a blessing for their family.

The examination will help us identify what parts of the brain are working well and what parts of the brain are not working so well. The goal of treatment is to use the good to help treat the bad, which results in improved neurological function. The long-term goal is to slow the progression if we can and to give home strategies to help keep the patient as safe as we can.

Our goal is to work with the patient and caregivers to create home strategies to reduce the frequency and intensity of seizure activity. In office, we identify triggers, both physical and chemical. Treatments are designed to help strengthen the affected areas in order to reduce the effects of seizures.

Some seizure disorders will not respond to our approach. However, we will know that either very early on in treatment or at the time of the exam.

We treat many patients from birth to the elderly who have suffered a stroke. Our examination and diagnostic testing is designed to reveal what parts of the brain have been affected by the stroke so that we can begin implementing rehabilitation strategies. We have successfully treated patients who recently suffered a stroke and those who suffered a stroke long ago.

Cerebral palsy can be mild to severe. Children who are functioning well may have some learning disabilities resulting from their stroke. We help children reach their academic and physical potential.