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Marten's story and his struggle with cerebral palsy
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Naming Ceremony
Warning, some of the videos on this page can be quite distressing to watch! Also remember that it is easy to underestimate the problem because one of Marten's vocal cords is not working - imagine what it would be like if he was at full volume!

The following two videos give an example of what we were experiencing every night of the week with Marten. The "sessions", as we used to call them, could easily continue for 5 or 6 hours with only short breaks for him to recover a little strength.

These sessions continued (with the exception of 2 nights) for some 8 months, after leaving hospital in May 2011 until late January 2012, shortly after we put him on the ABR therapy. The exception was the 2 nights immediately after his Consultant prescribed muscle relaxing drugs, on the third night he reverted to "normal" - by that time we had a boy addicted to a drug the positive effect of which was zero.


The following movies were taken to let our friends at ABR Belgium see how Marten was moving; how much uncontrolled movement there was, and to give them an idea of the weaknesses he displayed as part of his cerebral palsy condition. In this video the uncontrolled arms and legs movements are obvious.

Here we see typical movements from someone who has spastic cerebral palsy. The whole body arches and the legs shoot out and stiffen - in time the spine will permanently twist. You will also notice the bulge around his tummy, this area is extremely weak - again a typical feature of this type of cerebral palsy.

The most striking part of this video is the way Marten is breathing from his abdomen instead of his chest. The pressing of the diaphragm onto the intestine every time he took a breath meant that Marten suffered from almost continuous reflux. No drug can fix this reflux problem, only the strengthening of the abdomenal area can achieve that.

The last in this series of videos reveals that in addition to the weaknesses in the abdomenal area the rib cage is also inflated. If you look closely you can just see the beginnings of his rib cage starting to distort and the lower bones starting to turn upwards as the strong spastic muscles slowly distort his whole frame, normally resulting in the pelvis tilting and the child being unable to sit properly.