STARS Rehab is the only place in North East Florida that has a free standing locally owned health center designed exclusively for people living with Parkinson’s disease. Our overarching rehab goal is to support you through your journey with PD and to help you live a great life today, tomorrow, and beyond! Our therapists have advanced training in PD and many of them exclusively treat people with PD. We even have our own highly trained facility dog named Harley, who works alongside our patients making sessions fun and engaging. Our unique open environment fosters a sense of community and unity as people re-claim their lives with the guidance of their therapists and the encouragement of other patients with the same goals! All rehab sessions are one-on-one and last for 40 to 45 minutes.
Our PD rehab program provides a comprehensive examination using standardized PD assessments twice a year. Think of it as a dental model of care whereby you visit your therapists for a full body “check-up” and “cleaning” every 6 months. Your therapist will run a battery of tests to look at your walking, endurance, balance, mobility, self-care ability, cognition, speech and swallowing function, and fine motor hand control. If all looks good, adjustments to your home program and exercise and wellness class participation will be made, and a 6 month follow up appointment will be scheduled. If something in your examination looks amiss, your therapist will recommend one-on-one, evidence-based PD therapy to meet your unique needs. The duration of care may range from 1 to 12 weeks, depending on the individual and their life circumstances.
PHYSICAL THERAPY – Our Physical Therapists are trained in both the LSVT BIG and the PWR Moves! Programs. The goal is to teach you restorative and or preventative exercises to address posture, slowness, muscle stiffness (rigidity), axial rotation, strength, endurance, and balance. Early, preventative intervention is ideal, but it’s NEVER too late to benefit from Physical Therapy. Our intense whole-body functional mobility training will improve your ability to smoothly move in and out of a chair, lower or prevent fall risk, improve your mobility at home and in the community, and even make getting in and out of the car and bed easier. Moderate to vigorous aerobic exercise is also included in physical therapy to promote brain health, motor learning, and improve physical capacity. All exercises are evidenced based and progressed over time to become more challenging. Advanced skills such as dual tasking ability (moving and thinking at the same time), floor mobility, and fall recovery training will be practiced. We will also help you achieve personal fitness goals and ready you for our in-house target=”_blank”Group Wellness Classes. Your personal program will be designed to meet your unique needs. Whether young or old, newly diagnosed or a PD veteran, be prepared to work hard, sweat, and laugh as we work together to achieve your goals.
SPEECH THERAPY – Our Speech Therapist is trained in both LSVT LOUD and SPEAK OUT! programs to restore your voice and articulation though speech and cognitive exercises using a specialized workbook. Problems such as a soft, monotone, hoarse or stuttering voice can be treated by learning how to speak with intent through guided practice. Technology is often used to enhance treatment sessions and provide objective feedback on your progress. After rehab is complete, on-going practice is needed to maintain gains so people often join our target=”_blank”LOUD CROWD and target=”_blank”SING OUT LOUD group wellness classes.
Our Speech Therapist also has specialized training in swallowing function and utilizes VITALSTIM therapy: (electrical stimulation) combined with physical exercises to help strengthen swallowing muscles and remap the brain to improve swallowing.
Focused cognitive therapy is another area of rehab offered by our Speech Therapist to address thinking and memory health.
Speech therapy should start early, even if you don’t think you need it, it’s a good idea to come in for an examination and get base-line data so that intervention can occur pro-actively and not reactively.
Meet Our Parkinson’s Specialized Therapists:
- MELANIE LOMAGLIO, PT, DPT, MSC, NCS,
- ANNA MCINTYRE, PT, DPT,
- GEORGE “PAUL” HEBBLER, PT, DPT,
- DEBRA MULLIN, SLP
- SARAH PINASCO, PT, DPT, NCS
- SABRINA GEBERT, PT, DPT