–   JULY 2022   –

July blog BannerHow our work transforms lives;
A traumatic brain injury case study


If you’re wondering how the work we do differs from other physiotherapists, one example is our client, Yusef (aged 59). Yusef sustained a severe traumatic brain injury about 10 years before we started working with him. His long hospital admission resulted in left-sided weakness, and Yusef needing 24-hour care in supported accommodation. He was able to stand up briefly, with a lot of support from two people holding him up, which was really hard for him and not something he enjoyed or wanted to do. He was also suffering with a lot of back pain and felt very scared of falling.


traumatic brain injury – left-sided weakness – broken leg – stress and anxiety


His original physio wasn’t specialised in treating people with neurological disorders. One day, there was an accident where the physio hadn’t turned off the powered wheelchair Yusef relied on to get around in. As Yusef went to try to stand up, the joystick got nudged and he drove into the wall and broke his leg. After that, he was told to rest in bed and not to put any weight on his leg. Under the misguidance of his original physio, Yusef ended up in bed for nine months, doing nothing. He should have been able to get out of bed, and to do some kind of exercise, but he didn’t have the right physio supporting his needs. We received the referral from Yusef’s brother, Ken, who was ready to give up and feeling very unsure whether he should keep pushing Yusef to have any further treatment, as it was making Yusef so upset, stressed and anxious. Ken wasn’t sure how realistic it was to even hope for any minor improvements for his brother’s quality of life.


Assessment and action

Jacqui, our director, did a full assessment and based on this, knew that Yusef did have the capability of trying to stand up again, but it was going to be a long process to do that. The previous physio had dragged Yusef up into a standing position, skipping all the crucial intermediate steps and consequently, causing further harm to Yusef’s body. Over the course of nine months, Jac started by just slowly increasing Yusef’s capacity with rolling and sitting on the edge of the bed. These small steps built Yusef’s confidence, strength, and resilience to be able to do things in the right way and move properly, so as not to hurt himself. 

Jac was able to build Yusef up to a point where he was able to stand up again, and it was something that he actually enjoyed doing. He wasn’t upset or scared anymore; he fully trusted Jac and wanted to succeed. When working with Yusef, Jac always pays close attention to Yusef’s nonverbal communication and knows from a look Yusef gets in his eye when he’s had enough and it is time to stop and rest. They have an excellent rapport and strong bond of trust.



The very first time Yusef stood up by himself, his brother Ken was there to witness it first-hand. In that moment, Yusef had so much joy on his face, proud at his achievement, and Ken knew that he made the right decision to hire Active Edge Physio; it was so empowering for both of them. Not every physio can get these kind of results. It is only highly specialised physios trained in neuro physio that fully understand how to work with people who have TBIs. Had Yusef been left under the care of the old physio, he may still be in a bed unable to stand up, with minimal quality of life and no independence. 

Since this first major milestone, Jac got Yusef a specialised cycle that he can wheel up to in his wheelchair, get his legs strapped in, then push it like he’s riding a bike. He does it every single day and absolutely loves it. This builds up his strength to stand up. Each year working with Yusef, we empower him to be more independent, carefully planning what the next small steps need to be each time to reach a new goal. Although Yusef is not going to be able to walk again, we can still set realistic, obtainable goals so he continues to progress. 

Final results

In working with us, Yusef can now stand up again, he’s regained his trust and empowerment, has more control and autonomy over himself, he’s so much happier and he’s proud of himself. All the other staff who support him were shocked that he was able to do any of this.

Yusef is just one of countless client success stories. If you need to refer people in your care who require neuro physio, our dedicated specialists would be delighted to help. Contact us to book a free 15-minute consultation with our team here at Active Edge Physio. Alternatively, complete the referral form online and we’ll be in touch within 24 hours (on week days) to explore the best way forward.