Two New Physical Therapists Join CureDuchenne Cares Therapy Team
NEWPORT BEACH, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#CureDuchenne–Proper physical therapy designed particularly for those with Duchenne
muscular dystrophy, a fatal genetic disease that causes muscle
deterioration, can extend vital mobility to a young patient’s life. CureDuchenne
Cares has developed a specialized physical therapy, education and
outreach training program for caregivers and health professionals
dedicated to helping those with Duchenne. CureDuchenne Cares adds two
new physical therapists, Celeste Graham and Doug Levine, to its leading
edge physical therapy team.
Graham, PT, and Doug
Levine, PT, join Jennifer
Wallace, PT and Director of the CureDuchenne Cares program, who
initially developed the workshops and training sessions. Together these
physical therapists will combine their years of experience with the
common goal of creating a healthier future for Duchenne patients all
over the country.
“Duchenne is such a rare disease, that it is often improperly diagnosed.
This can lead to missed opportunities to begin care in the disease’s
early stage,” said Debra Miller, Founder and CEO of CureDuchenne.
“There is no cure for Duchenne and, as of now, physical therapy and
steroids are the only known impactful treatments. That is why we truly
encourage every Duchenne family to take advantage of the CureDuchenne
Cares education and treatment programs.”
Duchenne is a devastating muscle disease that affects nearly 20,000 boys
in the United States alone. Most children are diagnosed by the age of 5,
lose their ability to walk about 12 and most do not survive their
mid-20s. However, appropriate physical therapy has the potential to add
years of mobility to lives of Duchenne patients.
The CureDuchenne Cares workshops feature two sessions. The first session
is the continuing education course for healthcare professionals. The
full-day course is designed for physical therapists, occupational
therapists, adapted physical educators, speech and language
pathologists, educators, physicians and nursing professionals. The
session focuses on therapy treatment, orthopedic management, activity
modification and equipment selection. The physical therapy workshops
give healthcare professionals an in depth understanding of Duchenne
including the typical progression of the disease, help them select
appropriate physical therapy treatment options and develop thorough care
plans for clients, and understand current research strategies and
upcoming treatments. Upcoming physical therapist sessions are scheduled
10 in Long Island, New York; July
8 in Chicago, Illinois; and July
29 in Sacramento, California.
Professionals who complete the continuing education session are
encouraged to become CureDuchenne
Cares Certified Physical Therapists. Certified physical therapists
received ongoing training on the most current standards of care for
Duchenne and are recognized as qualified providers for physical therapy
for Duchenne patients.
The second CureDuchenne Cares session is designed for families and
caregivers. This free workshop focuses on proper education and basic
exercises for primary and daily caregivers. Topics include stretching
instruction and routines, equipment demos, activity and school
modifications, and mobility management. The session also features
updates on Duchenne research and clinical trials. Family and Caregiver
Workshops are scheduled for this summer on June
11, in Long Island, New York; July
9, in Chicago, Illinois; and July
30 in Sacramento, California.
Both Graham and Levine have been licensed, practicing physical
therapists since 1997. Graham’s experience includes in-home and clinical
settings, establishing education and medical models of care. The
majority of her pediatric experience was with San Diego County’s
California Children Services program, where she served for some time
as liaison to the Muscle Disease Clinic at Rady Children’s Hospital,
where she coordinated care for patients with Duchenne. Her patient care
currently focuses solely on boys and young adults with Duchenne.
Levine has worked for the Shorkey Center in Beaumont, Texas, Dell
Children’s Hospital in Austin, Texas, and has provided physical therapy
for over 10 school districts. Levine currently owns Growing Places
Therapy Services in Austin, Texas, a pediatric therapy practice
providing physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy. He
has been working with families affected by Duchenne from the beginning
of his career and has chosen to focus much of his time and energy to
help those who have been impacted by this disease. Levine has been the
physical therapist for the Austin area Muscular Dystrophy clinic for the
past seven years and has been an active volunteer for MDA Summer Camp
for the past 10 years.
“Celeste and Doug will be valuable assets to our organization, Duchenne
families and the entire Duchenne community,” said Miller. “Their
experience will enable CureDuchenne Cares to expand our physical therapy
training programs and workshops. Our aim is to provide the best therapy
possible to thousands of children with Duchenne giving them a better
chance of maintaining their mobility for as long as possible.”
For more information, go to www.CureDuchenneCares.org.
About CureDuchenne Cares:
CureDuchenne Cares is a physical therapy, education and outreach program
for the Duchenne muscular dystrophy community to help establish and
provide consistent standard of care for Duchenne patients. The three
main goals of CureDuchenne Cares are to improve outcomes, extend
ambulation and provide guidance on the disease management and care.
This vital program aims to give parents, family members, caregivers and
professionals working with those with Duchenne the information and tools
they need to keep their loved ones as healthy as possible so that they
can best benefit from pharmacological treatments when they become
CureDuchenne, a nonprofit that raises awareness and funds research to
find a cure for Duchenne muscular dystrophy, joined forces with Jennifer
Wallace, physical therapist and founder of the Duchenne Therapy Network,
to develop this program.
CureDuchenne Cares sponsors include: BioMarin, Bristol-Myers Squibb,
Catabasis, Idera Pharmaceuticals, Invitae, PhaseBio, PTC Therapeutics,
Sarepta Therapeutics, and SITE SoCal.
is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to finding a cure for
Duchenne, the most common and most lethal form of muscular dystrophy. As
the leading genetic killer of young boys, Duchenne affects more than
300,000 patients worldwide, most of them boys and young men.
CureDuchenne has garnered international attention for its efforts to
raise funds and awareness for Duchenne through venture philanthropy. For
more information on how to help raise awareness and funds needed for
research, please visit www.cureduchenne.org,
and follow us on Facebook,
Karen Harley, 949-872-2552