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Marina A.

I am very grateful to Brandi Kirk for giving me my life back.  When exercising with some heavier weights, I inadvertently lost my grip on one of the weights and ended up rotating my pelvis to the point where I couldn’t walk normally.  Before learning about Brandi, I went to see other physical therapists who tried to help me, but my pelvis would just rotate back out of alignment.  Someone insisted I go see Brandi because she is highly skilled in the additional knowledge of other incredible therapies.  Sure enough, at my first appointment with her, Brandi found the root cause of my problem.  Over some time as she gently worked on me, she successfully got my pelvis into proper alignment, and I am able to walk again without pain!  Even though I paid out-of-pocket, it was well worth it for Brandi to realign my pelvis correctly and to even fix other related issues.  In fact, I found that my cost for in-network physical therapy was actually more in the long run because it had more sessions, which were not even helping my issue.  Furthermore, my sessions with Brandi were 1-on-1 in a private room for 1 hour in a peaceful atmosphere.  Brandi is a very talented gem of a physical therapist, and patients in her new location are extremely fortunate to have her treat them.

Patient Spotlight

Waiting To Exhale - Jenny's Story

It was just nine years ago when I began to exhale. 

My 19-year-old special needs daughter, Jenny, had struggled all her life with a complex medical history and an ongoing unique set of daily challenges. Our life was an unending rollercoaster of emotions when faced with perplexing and often unanswerable medical challenges, pain, and frustration.

History

Jenny arrived in the world after a normal nine-month gestation. She was our third-born child. Almost immediately we learned of cardiac challenges as she turned blue due to a congenital birth defect and reversed cardiac anatomy. By the time she had open heart surgery at 10 months, she also had three strokes and was diagnosed with a seizure disorder. Our world revolved around an array of beeping lights, home monitors, medications, special diets, specialists, and her first open heart surgical repair. Traditional physical, occupational, and speech/swallowing therapy followed.

Her preschool and early elementary years proceeded much like a snowball gathering speed as it rolls down a hill. Four additional strokes, the need for supplemental oxygen, hearing aids, glasses, fatigue, sensory challenges, hypotonia, and a “failure to thrive” diagnosis---and ongoing PT, OT, speech, and respiratory therapy were added to her medical schedule. By fourth grade, a second open heart procedure closed off leaks in her superior vena cava and the wall of the heart separating left and right chambers. Still more intense therapies, more serious seizures, and just plain “more.”

Incontinence and severe abdominal migraines hit in high school, and pain management techniques offered no relief. Physical and occupational therapists sought the help of more specialized practitioners and a referral to Brandi Kirk at Kirk Integrative Physical Therapy. After just a few visits, I felt I could slowly begin to exhale.

Initially referred for teenage incontinence concerns, Brandi gathered records, reviewed extensive application answers, ordered home observation and reporting.  An extensive initial manual exam yielded little information due to Jenny’s neuropathy. 

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Out of Network and Out of Pocket

Weekly visceral manipulation physical therapy sessions were recommended to supplement her ongoing more traditional therapy program. As parents, we balked at the “out of network” insurance needs and braced for a few weeks of out-of-pocket self-payment. After seeing first-hand the results and learning more about visceral manipulation therapy developed by Jean-Pierre Barral, a French osteopath whose gentle hands-on manual therapy techniques helped Jenny’s internal organs glide smoothly in a more natural rhythmic rocking motion, we opted to continue the program.

Becoming a self-pay patient meant Jenny’s treatment could expand to encompass a whole-body approach as incontinence treatment yielded to treating existing surgical scar tissue, organ mobility, neurological issues, and the debilitating abdominal migraines which caused her to miss favorite activities like school, choir, and cheerleading, due to nausea, vomiting, and unremitting pain.

It wasn’t until age 19 when geneticists were finally able to pinpoint a rare genetic condition which accounts for most, but not all Jenny’s medical challenges. But because of the rarity of her condition, no definitive treatment recommendations could be made.

Practitioner Brandi Kirk, a highly skilled physical therapist who trained in the technique and travels the world to share this technique with others, was unfazed. By listening to Jenny’s body, she was able to provide relief and calm angry, painful episodes. She has now been seeing Jenny for nine years and the investment in Jenny’s health and well-being has yielded a very positive return on investment. 

Visceral manual physical therapy has enabled Jenny the opportunity to return to many of her beloved activities and make huge gains in health. She has been able to reduce oxygen need while feeling stronger and better each day. Among her proudest moments, leading her special needs cheerleading team to a coveted first place national cheerleading championship in spring 2022, zip-lining at camp, playing the lead and singing a duet in her church’s Christmas production, and being named among her county’s top 150 “changemakers” due to her extensive volunteer work.

Jenny’s success has led other friends and family members, including myself (her mom) to turn to Brandi Kirk and visceral manual therapy to augment traditional therapy modalities and help ease recovery following major back surgery, gallbladder removal and more.

Not only have we all been able to exhale a bit thanks to Brandi Kirk’s intervention, we’re all breathing a whole lot easier.

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