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Lee Silverman Voice Treatment- BIG (LSVT-BIG) Helps Those Suffering from Parkinson’s Disease

What is Parkinson’s Disease? 

Parkinson’s Disease is a progressive disease of the nervous systems marked by tremor, muscle rigidity and slow, imprecise movement. It commonly affects 4-6 million people worldwide.  It is most prevalent in Caucasian and Hispanic men over the age of 60, with a prevalence of twice as many men affected compared to women.  Some common results from this disorder include tremors, slowing of movement and rigidity with movement. Parkinson’s Disease can also have an effect on a person’s speech, a loss of automatic movements including blinking, smiling or arm swing during walking.

The most common physical challenge a person with Parkinson’s faces is difficulty walking. Individuals often have a slow, shuffled gait pattern. Parkinson’s disease can have an effect on a person’s ability to perform daily tasks, like buttoning a shirt, putting on a jacket or getting up from a chair.

How LSVT BIG® at Excel Works

At Excel Physical Therapy, LSVT-BIG is taught by a certified physical therapist. LSVT-BIG is defined as an “intensive amplitude- based exercise program for the limb motor system and re-education of the sensorimotor system.” In other words, as the name implies, the exercises are comprised of big, exaggerated movements.

The LSVT-BIG program is a specific exercise program consisting of 16 one-hour sessions for four consecutive days per week for four weeks. Throughout the four weeks, patients are completing daily homework and carryover learned exercises for 30 days straight. This is followed by coaching of five everyday tasks that the patient is having difficulty completing, such as sit to stand transfers or pulling keys out of pocket, all under close supervision of the licensed physical therapist.

Our team of certified experts are here to help slow the progression of the disease and enhance quality of life. For more information about the LSVT-BIG program at Excel Physical Therapy, please see our location list to find a certified LSVT-BIG clinician near you.