I’ve had severe Chronic Fatigue Syndrome for the past
several years making it extremely difficult to exercise, so my muscles have
gradually weakened and wasted over time.
Then to add insult to injury, I had an endocrine condition that leached
calcium from my bones, giving me osteoporosis at an early age. Even though the condition was corrected by
surgery, I’ve struggled for the past 2 years to rebuild my bone mass to something
healthy again. I’ve done Physical
Therapy, worked out at the gym, and maintained a walking program, and STILL my
muscles have remained weak and atrophied, my balance and ability to respond and
adapt to uneven surfaces (called proprioception) remained pretty questionable, and
my bone mass remained stuck in the osteoporotic range. During the past 7 months I’ve had 3 falls and
other mishaps due to poor strength and balance, and 2 fractures due to
osteoporosis. I found that I had to be
constantly aware of my feet and orientation, so I didn’t trip or turn my ankle
on a pebble.
The first thing I noticed
about my initial Great Bones session was that it didn’t wear me out (like going
to the gym did), and I wasn’t inordinately sore afterwards! A couple of days later, I noticed that it was
easier to go up and down the stairs and to go about my daily activities without
feeling as worn out. And my physical
therapist noticed the first week that I was much stronger and that my balance
and proprioception was noticeably improved.
Over the next 5 weeks, my strength, balance, and proprioception have
been approaching what I would call “normal.”
My strength feels solid now, it’s easier to go about my day, and I feel
as if I can adapt to uneven surfaces normally, so I don’t feel as if I have to
constantly be on guard to avoid things like twisting my ankle on a pebble.
I feel as if I’ve reached my
initial Great Bones goal of increasing my muscle mass and strength, and
re-establishing good balance and proprioception even in the face of Chronic
Fatigue Syndrome. (Now I’m excited to
see what future bone density tests will say about my bone mass!)
-Dr. Janine MacDonald