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Therapy With A Beat: Saint Joseph First In Lexington To Use New MusicGlove Technology

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For many stroke patients, the word “therapy” probably doesn’t conjure up images of fun and games, but a new therapy making its debut this year at Saint Joseph Hospital Rehabilitation at the Beaumont Centre YMCA has participants smiling.

If you were to watch the therapy in action, you might be forgiven for mistaking it as a new version of Guitar Hero.

Patients wearing what’s called the MusicGlove, a controller of sorts fitted with sensors on the fingers, work to touch notes scrolling down a screen. Saint Joseph therapist Violet Sellers says the game helps promote neural reorganization for patients suffering from a decline in motor function.

"You see a disk going on the screen. And with the timing of the music you try and hit your fingers in conjunction with that disk and then the sensors pick it up and it gives you feedback," she explains.

Sellers says most of the patient reviews so far have focused on "how much fun it is, how much fun it makes therapy."

Saint Joseph is the first healthcare center in Lexington to utilize the new technology – and while the therapy was designed with stroke patients in mind, Sellers has been using it with MS and cerebral palsy patients and is eager to test its effectiveness on anyone working to regain hand or wrist use after an injury.

Josh James fell in love with college radio at Western Kentucky University's student station, New Rock 92 (now Revolution 91.7). After working as a DJ and program director, he knew he wanted to come home to Lexington and try his hand in public radio.