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Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy (SDR)

Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy (SDR) surgery is a procedure that treats muscle spasticity by cutting nerve rootlets in the spinal cord that are sending abnormal messages to the brain. This surgery can provide life changing benefits for children diagnosed with spastic diplegia, spastic quadriplegia or spastic hemiplegia. Children at least 2 years of age who exhibit some form of independent mobility and possess the motivation and ability to participate in therapy, may be candidates for this procedure.

Why Begin Here?

Easter Seals DuPage & Fox Valley therapists have been specially trained by the SDR teams at St. Louis Children's Hospital and Gillette Children’s Hospital. If requested a pre-operative evaluation can be completed by specially trained Easter Seals therapists. This evaluation focuses on spasticity, strength, motor control, developmental functions, range of motion, balance and gait. A video tape and written report is sent to the SDR hospital team and is used to help in determining if this is an appropriate referral for SDR.

Our post-operative care includes an intensive outpatient therapy program geared toward specific goals designed in collaboration with the SDR hospital treatment teams. Programs vary for each child but all include positioning the child, range of motion to gain muscle length, strengthening, developing reciprocal movement and graded motor control. It is expected that parents will assist their child in the performance of daily home exercise programs in addition to attending our outpatient physical therapy  4 – 5 times per week.

How Do I Get Started?

For more information, please contact Diana Dixon, Intake Supervisor, at 630-282-2022 or email dldixon@eastersealsdfvr.org.

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