The SaeboFlex upper limb orthotic is a dynamic, mechanical devise that supports the wrist, hand and fingers in an open position, using a spring loaded finger extension system. The user can then actively flex against the resistance of the springs to close the hand therefore allowing them to use the hand functionally in therapy or during home based exercise.
The SaeboReach consists of the SaeboFlex with an additional above elbow component to aid elbow extension.
These products allow the user to incorporate an otherwise non-functional hand in functional tasks. This can therefore strengthen a weakened arm and driving neuroplastic change by allowing the user to take part in a programme of mass repetition both in rehab and at home.
It is important for any potential user to understand that the SaeboFlex and Reach are not magic bullets. It is merely a tool to allow mass repetition of functional upper limb tasks which otherwise are difficult or impossible to do independently. To gain the most benefit the user needs to commit to carrying out a home programme for 45 minutes twice a day.
Although it is possible to put the orthotic on independently it is tricky and ideally having someone to assist will make the process far less frustrating.
The Saebo website (http://www.saebo.com) has a lot of footage of clients using the saebo and shows the progress these clients have made. This is a valuable resource in deciding if you think the Saebo programme may work for you.
So could you be eligible for the SaeboFlex or reach?
To be assessed for the Saebo products you will be required to see a Saebo trained Occupational or Physiotherapist. They can ensure you have enough shoulder activity, soft tissue length in the wrist and hand, and a strong enough grip to ensure success. They can also assess whether you would benefit from the Reach component.
Here at ARC we currently have 2 (soon to be 5!!) trained therapists. We also have the benefit of having an assessment kit which allows the client to try the SaeboFlex/Reach during an assessment and if necessary use in therapy sessions to build strength before purchase, to allow successful use at home.
So if you think you or someone you know might benefit from the SaeboFlex/Reach then make an appointment for an assessment. If appropriate we can measure you to have a your custom made orthotic produced and if not we can advise you on the best upperlimb rehabilitation programme for you.