Thomas' Story

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Alistar Smiling During Treatment

Meet Thomas

"We are definitely coming to do CIMT again"
- Sara, Thomas' mum.
Find out what happened when Thomas came back for a follow up CIMT programme

Follow Thomas' Story

“I’ve seen him develop in many areas during the CIMT, not only his arm!”
Sara, Thomas' mum.

The Challenge

Thomas had an obvious developmental disregard of his left upper limb and although he had some active movement he was unable to access this due to lack of awareness of his left side. This severely limited his access to play as he was unable to complete any bimanual tasks. Thomas had very little sensory awareness in his left upper limb. Due to this he disliked therapists facilitation and holding objects. During the 3 week programme we worked alongside Thomas to increase his awareness and sensory input which allowed him to include his arm in play.

“He’s using his weaker arm to scratch his ear or nose now, which he’s never done before.”
- Sara, Thomas' mum.

The Goals

  • To increase awareness of Thomas’ left arm
  • To decrease the tone in Thomas’ left arm
  • To improve Thomas’ strength
  • To give Thomas the ability to grasp

Our Approach


Regular integration of left arm in play


Regular use of touch and texture to increase sensory awareness. Muscle strengthening through play and movement


Gross motor activities

The Science-y Bit

Thomas had very little awareness of his left arm and having the cast on for 24 hours a day for 3 weeks, has allowed him to focus on only using his affected arm in activities, and increase his awareness of his left upper limb.

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This stimulates the formation of new pathways for sensory feedback and movement, which “rewires” the brain, meaning that a larger part of the brain becomes active when receiving sensory input and producing movement of the weaker arm. For Thomas this meant he was more aware of his arm and integrated it into play more readily.

Nikki Owen portrait headshot

Nikki Owen - Paediatric Physiotherapist

“I really didn’t know what to expect when coming to CIMT, I just knew it was something I had to try”
Sara, Thomas’ mum.

The Results

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General Usage

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Arm Use

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Grasp-Release (items)

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Fine Motor Adjustment

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Pace items

The Achievements

  • Thomas can now pick up a variety of different size objects from the therapist’s hand.
  • Thomas has more control of his thumb allowing him to use a palmar grasp.
  • Thomas has an increased awareness of his left upper limb.
  • Thomas has great accuracy and coordination enabling him to incorporate his arm in play.
“He can put his weaker arm around the toothbrush now and we can teach him how to clean his teeth and before CIMT I would never been able to do that!”
Sara, Thomas’ mum.

The Parents Feedback

“The best part of the CIMT was seeing Thomas personality develop further. He has now more awareness of his left hand and can now control his arm more. My advice to any parent would be just do it! I was a bit sceptical about all casting process at the start but once the cast was on, Thomas adapted it really very quickly."

The therapists and staff were fantastic, super friendly, thoughtful and really tried to help.” - Sara, Thomas' mum.

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The Therapists Feedback

Thomas was a pleasure to work with. He provided us with many giggles and memorable moments. Despite his limited movement he worked extremely hard and approached every task we gave him with determination. We are all so proud of what he achieved and with mum’s help we know he will build on this in the future.

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He provided us with many giggles and memorable moments.
Nikki Owen portrait headshot

Nikki Owen - Paediatric Physiotherapist

"CIMT is so rewarding"
Sara, Thomas' mum.

Find out what happened next

Find out what happened to Thomas on his second visit to CIMT

Find out more

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one of our specialist CIMT therapists.

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