The story of Mila according to the parents:
“Mila was born on 1 July 2013 after a so-called normal pregnancy
and by vaginal delivery with epidural.
At birth all seemed normal, except a lower head circumference of one centimeter the average. Her Apgar score was 9 1′ – 9 5′ – 10 10′. It was thus during her first two months of life.
Head circumference has continued to evolve as a smooth curve always slightly below average and except more intense and long cries than normal, there were no major sign of internal problems.
Nevertheless during the third month of life, signs began to appear. Mila’s lower and upper limbs became hypertonic, and her trunk became hypotonic.
We were then referred for medical specialists and therapists to find out what the problem was.
It appeared that Mila has suffered of a cerebral palsy during pregnancy that caused severe damages to both hemispheres of her brain. A slight epileptic activity also seems to result. We have than been suggested some palliative treatments. Continue physiotherapy which Mila has started at the age of six months, to prevent that members become stiff. And benzodiazepine supposed to create muscle relaxation and reduce myoclonic bursts. Given the many side effects of this drug, and the fact that we want our daughter to awaken to life rather than being put to sleep by a drug, we opted not to give it.
In the meantime we heard about the First Step method by a friend who had herself a friend who used this therapy for their daughters. Thanks to the extremely fast and effective intervention by the AEMO (Children and Orphan Diseases Association) we met Mr. Shai Silberbusch in November 2014 at HUG Geneva hospital for an assessment. The first thing that interested us with this method is that instead of focusing on what has become impossible, all efforts are channeled on what can still be made and improved.
The First Step therapy began on February 8th, 2015 in Tel Aviv, Israel. Mila there met a team of professionals attentive and focused solely on the development of its potential. Thanks to an intense and intensive work, focused on exercises with Mila and training so that we parents can continue the work at home, real improvements could be visible in just three weeks. Indeed, Mila, who was hypertonic from lower and upper limbs, and hypotonic from the trunk, has now much more relaxed limbs and begins to improve her trunk tonus.
Mila has a better eye contact and seem more attentive to its environment. She can now stay on her belly and even sleep on her belly. She straightens her head better, and posture and balance is visibly improving. Mila also passes better nights and agrees to be addressed and taken by other people that her mom or her dad. Finally, during the stay, once put in favorable situation, Mila almost completely straightened on her knees leaning on her hands. This is not an exhaustive list of perceived improvements after the start of therapy. Nevertheless, we are aware that we are only at the beginning of a process that will require much time, effort and perseverance, to give Mila every chance of an optimal development with the land that is hers.
With the help of AEMO and First Step Method, we are ready to produce them.
We would like to thank everyone involved for their commitment, professionalism and empathy.”
Anne-Claire & Nelson Tiago Ferreira Fernandes