Peter Turkeltaub, MD, Receives Geschwind Prize for Behavioral Neurology

Honor is one of the most prestigious in the field

WASHINGTON, D.C. – May 3, 2017- Peter Turkeltaub, MD, PhD, has been recognized with one of the most prestigious awards in behavioral neurology.  Dr. Turkeltaub, director of the MedStar NRH Aphasia Clinic and of the Cognitive Recovery Lab at Georgetown University, a part of the Georgetown University Center for Brain Plasticity and Recovery (https://cbpr.georgetown.edu/), is the recipient of the 2017 Norman Geschwind Prize for Excellence awarded by the American Academy of Neurology (AAN). The annual award is made to an early-career scientist who has made significant contributions to the field.

Dr. Turkeltaub’s research focuses on stroke-induced aphasia, an impairment of language that affects the ability to read, write and understand or express speech. He is the principal investigator for several clinical research studies testing new interventions to improve aphasia recovery—and to better understand what brain structures and functions are used to perform language in healthy people and those with aphasia. More data about the differences may lead to more effective treatment. 

Dr. Turkeltaub is also a practicing clinician who sees first-hand how patients struggle with communication—and reach road blocks in recovery. “Today a person with aphasia doesn’t have many options after traditional speech therapy,” says Dr. Turkeltaub.  “Stroke takes away their abilities. But involvement in a clinical trial is a way to give something back. It’s ironic, but the stroke gives them an opportunity they would not have had before—they are in a unique position to contribute in a way the rest of us cannot.”

A graduate of the Georgetown University School of Medicine, Dr. Turkeltaub went on to the University of Pennsylvania for residency and a fellowship in neurology and cognitive neurology.  

“At Penn, I studied under Dr. H. Branch Coslett,” he says. “He was my mentor. But an entire generation ahead of him was trained by Norman Geschwind. It’s a special privilege to receive this award named in his honor, and I’m very grateful for this recognition of my work.”

-Written by Emily Turk

 


About MedStar National Rehabilitation Network

The MedStar National Rehabilitation Network is a regional system of rehabilitation care that offers inpatient, day treatment and outpatient services in Washington, D.C., Maryland, Northern Virginia and Delaware.

The Network’s interdisciplinary team of rehabilitation experts provides comprehensive services to help people recover as fully as possible following illness and injury.  Rehabilitation medicine specialists, psychologists, physical and occupational therapists, and speech-language pathologists work hand-in-hand with other rehab professionals to design treatment plans tailored to each patient’s unique needs. Rehabilitation plans feature a team approach and include the use of state-of-the-art technology and advanced medical treatment based on the latest rehabilitation research.  

The Network provides comprehensive programs specifically designed to aid in the rehabilitation of adults and children recovering from neurologic and orthopaedic conditions such as amputation, arthritis, back and neck pain, brain injury, cancer, cardiac conditions, concussion, fibromyalgia, foot and ankle disorders, hand and upper extremity problems, MS, Parkinson’s, post-polio syndrome, stroke, spinal cord injury and disease, and sports and work-related injuries.

Inpatient and day treatment programs are provided at MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital located in Northwest Washington, D.C., and at more than 50 outpatient sites conveniently located throughout D.C., Baltimore, and all of Maryland, Northern Virginia, & Delaware.  MedStar National Rehabilitation Network is fully accredited by The Joint Commission,  the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF), with CARF accredited specialty programs for Amputations, Brain Injury, Spinal Cord Injury and Stroke.

For more on MedStar National Rehabilitation Network and to find a location near you, log on to MedStarNRH.org 

For Immediate Release

Contact: Derek Berry
Director of Communications
Ph: 202-877-1773
M: 571-218-7594
[email protected]

Advocates Reveal State of Progress, Need for More Clinical Research During Brain Injury Awareness Month

Montel Williams and Brain Injury Association of America Tackle TBI

WASHINGTON, D.C. – March 29, 2017- Leading advocates acknowledge accomplishments and advances in the field of Brain Injury Research but, call for more progress to help the more than five million people living with brain injuries in the U.S. today. Patient advocate and television personality Montel Williams and the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) have once again joined forces to call for greater strides in awareness, understanding, access to quality care, treatment opportunities and research for concussion and traumatic brain injury (TBI).

As part of Brain Injury Awareness Month, Montel Williams and Helius Medical Technologies, in partnership with BIAA, launched Tackling TBI,” an awareness campaign for TBI. The mission of the campaign is to raise awareness of TBI and concussions as growing health issues, to educate patients and caregivers, provide resources and to share opportunities to participate in research. The campaign includes a Public Service Announcement (PSA) featuring Montel Williams and former NFL player Marvin Washington, and a video series of interviews with TBI patients. Information on a Helius sponsored clinical trial for TBI can be found at www.braininjurytrial.com.

“Currently more than 5.3 million Americans in the U.S. live with a lifelong disability as a result of a TBI and there are 1.7 million new cases each year,” said Montel Williams. “But this isn’t just a civilian issue, an average of 15,000 active duty service members acquire brain injuries every year. Our goal is to raise awareness and provide patients information about new therapies in clinical trials so that they can have an educated discussion with their healthcare provider about the best option for them. My goal is to apply what I’ve learned as an MS patient and help those suffering from TBI become educated participants in their own courses of treatment.

“Brain injury has been thrust onto the national circuit as a result of important discussions around football players and veterans and now there remains important work to be done for all Americans living with the condition,” said Susan Connors, president and chief executive officer of BIAA. “A TBI can be the start of a misdiagnosed and misunderstood neurological disease and we need to expand on how we deliver help, hope and healing to the millions who have sustained this life-altering, sometimes devastating, injury.”

Recent brain injury advances include:

  • A three-year project to develop first-time Guidelines for the Rehabilitation and Disease Management of Adults with Moderate to Severe Traumatic Brain Injury.
  • The recent passing of the 21st Century Cures Act that will allow for the establishment of an NIH data collection system to track the incidence and prevalence of neurological conditions, provide NIH and FDA with new funding for medical research and new treatments, and support the coordination and collaboration of rehabilitation research.
  • Public awareness including BIAA’s Not Alone campaign designed to educate the general public about the incidence of brain injury and the needs of people with brain injuries and their families. The campaign works to de-stigmatize the injury, empower those who have survived, and promote the many types of support that are available.
  • The availability of clinical trials to support the development of new therapies.

A TBI is an injury that disrupts the normal function of the brain and can be caused by a host of things such as sports, car accidents, military service, trips, slips or falls. For many people, TBI causes fatigue, headaches, and difficulty with balance or motor skills, slurred speech, or seizures. Depending on the severity of the brain injury sustained, individuals with brain injuries need an array of emergency services, hospitalization, physician services, and medications to survive injury, as well as a continuum of treatments and rehabilitation to recover and regain as much lost function as possible over time.

 

 


About the Brain Injury Association of American (BIAA)

The Brain Injury Association of America is the country’s oldest and largest nationwide brain injury advocacy organization. BIAA’s mission is to advance awareness, research, treatment, and education and to improve the quality of life for all people affected by brain injury. BIAA is dedicated to increasing access to quality health care and raising awareness and understanding of brain injury. Further resources and information related to brain injury are available at http://www.BIAUSA.org, BIAA on Facebook and Twitter Page and through the National Brain Injury Information Center (NBIIC) at 1-800-444-6443.

 

About Helius Medical Technologies, Inc.

Helius Medical Technologies is a medical technology company focused on neurological wellness. Helius seeks to develop, license and acquire unique and non-invasive platform technologies that amplify the brain’s ability to heal itself. For more information, please visit www.heliusmedical.com

To download media resources for the “Tackling TBI” campaign visit: www.tacklingtbi.com.

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About MedStar National Rehabilitation Network

The MedStar National Rehabilitation Network is a regional system of rehabilitation care that offers inpatient, day treatment and outpatient services in Washington, D.C., Maryland, Northern Virginia and Delaware.

The Network’s interdisciplinary team of rehabilitation experts provides comprehensive services to help people recover as fully as possible following illness and injury.  Rehabilitation medicine specialists, psychologists, physical and occupational therapists, and speech-language pathologists work hand-in-hand with other rehab professionals to design treatment plans tailored to each patient’s unique needs. Rehabilitation plans feature a team approach and include the use of state-of-the-art technology and advanced medical treatment based on the latest rehabilitation research.  

The Network provides comprehensive programs specifically designed to aid in the rehabilitation of adults and children recovering from neurologic and orthopaedic conditions such as amputation, arthritis, back and neck pain, brain injury, cancer, cardiac conditions, concussion, fibromyalgia, foot and ankle disorders, hand and upper extremity problems, MS, Parkinson’s, post-polio syndrome, stroke, spinal cord injury and disease, and sports and work-related injuries.

Inpatient and day treatment programs are provided at MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital located in Northwest Washington, D.C., and at more than 50 outpatient sites conveniently located throughout D.C., Baltimore, and all of Maryland, Northern Virginia, & Delaware.  MedStar National Rehabilitation Network is fully accredited by The Joint Commission,  the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF), with CARF accredited specialty programs for Amputations, Brain Injury, Spinal Cord Injury and Stroke.

For more on MedStar National Rehabilitation Network and to find a location near you, log on to MedStarNRH.org 

For Immediate Release

Contact: Derek Berry
Director of Communications
Ph: 202-877-1773
M: 571-218-7594
[email protected]

MedStar NRH Research to Test Use of Stem Cell Therapy in Stroke Patients

Update from the Christoph Ruesch Research Center at MedStar NRH

MedStar NRH is one of 60 sites nationwide participating in the largest clinical trial of its kind to test the use of stem cells to restore motor function in stroke patients. The large double-blind, randomized study is based on an initial small investigation conducted at Stanford University that demonstrated results described as “stunning.”

Promising Initial Response

In the Stanford study led by Gary Steinberg, MD, chair of neurosurgery, 18 patients received adult stem cells harvested from bone marrow and injected through burr holes in their skulls. The stem cells were placed in three areas near the stroke-damaged brain tissue.

Each patient had significant impairment of motor function in their legs or arms. By the 12-month follow-up evaluation, nearly half of the participants experienced dramatic improvements—some walking again after being confined to wheelchairs.

“While it was a small sample, the results are very promising,” notes Richard Zorowitz, MD, principal investigator for the MedStar NRH arm of the new trial. “There were no serious side effects from the procedure or the treatment,” he adds. Dr. Steinberg has called the results clinically important—if not statistically significant. The new nationwide investigation should provide adequate data to clarify the value of the intervention.

Boosting Brain Plasticity

Richard Zorowitz, MD, stroke expert, heads up the stem cell study at MedStar NRH.

“At MedStar NRH, we’ve begun recruitment for patients, and while we are aiming for just four or five patients for the study, we would be happy to have more enrolled. Nationwide the study is aiming for a total of 156 people during the trial’s first two years.”

Dr. Zorowitz explains that patients in the study will be divided into three groups: One group will receive a high dose of stem cells, a second will receive a lower dose, and the final group will undergo a sham (simulated) surgical procedure, but receive no stem cells.

“Patients need to meet some strict inclusion criteria and suffer from some motor limitations, but they can be anywhere between six months to five years post stroke,” he adds. “They each will undergo careful evaluation and receive the stem cells during an in-andout brain procedure conducted at one of the study’s designated centers. Then we will follow them during five visits after surgery taking blood and measuring motor function.”

It’s speculated that the stem cells create a biochemical process that triggers the brain’s ability to repair itself. “We believe that new neuro pathways are developed,” Dr. Zorowitz says. “The brain mimics the plasticity seen in children and develops ‘work-arounds’ to compensate for injury and to facilitate recovery,” he adds.

For more information about the research, contact Study Coordinator Kathy Brady, PT, at 202-877-1022.

Written by Emily Turk.

 


 

About MedStar National Rehabilitation Network

The MedStar National Rehabilitation Network is a regional system of rehabilitation care that offers inpatient, day treatment and outpatient services in Washington, D.C., Maryland, Northern Virginia and Delaware.

The Network’s interdisciplinary team of rehabilitation experts provides comprehensive services to help people recover as fully as possible following illness and injury.  Rehabilitation medicine specialists, psychologists, physical and occupational therapists, and speech-language pathologists work hand-in-hand with other rehab professionals to design treatment plans tailored to each patient’s unique needs. Rehabilitation plans feature a team approach and include the use of state-of-the-art technology and advanced medical treatment based on the latest rehabilitation research.  

The Network provides comprehensive programs specifically designed to aid in the rehabilitation of adults and children recovering from neurologic and orthopaedic conditions such as amputation, arthritis, back and neck pain, brain injury, cancer, cardiac conditions, concussion, fibromyalgia, foot and ankle disorders, hand and upper extremity problems, MS, Parkinson’s, post-polio syndrome, stroke, spinal cord injury and disease, and sports and work-related injuries.

Inpatient and day treatment programs are provided at MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital located in Northwest Washington, D.C., and at more than 50 outpatient sites conveniently located throughout D.C., Baltimore, and all of Maryland, Northern Virginia, & Delaware.  MedStar National Rehabilitation Network is fully accredited by The Joint Commission,  the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF), with CARF accredited specialty programs for Amputations, Brain Injury, Spinal Cord Injury and Stroke.

For more on MedStar National Rehabilitation Network and to find a location near you, log on to MedStarNRH.org 

Suzanne Groah, MD, Receives Prestigious Grant to Study Urinary Tract Problems for Spinal Cord, MS Patients

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Sept. 23, 2016 - Suzanne Groah, MD, Director of the Spinal Cord Injury Consultation Liaison Service and of Spinal Cord Injury Research at MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital and Associate Professor of Rehabilitation Medicine at Georgetown University recently received an exciting new grant award for field initiated research from the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR).  The grant is approximately $600,000 over three years and will focus on urinary tract health in spinal cord injury and multiple sclerosis patients in the community. The work Dr. Groah and her research team conduct could have a lasting impact on those suffering from urinary tract problems who also live with spinal cord injury and MS.

Dr. Groah has been with MedStar NRH for many years. She has a subspecialty certification in spinal cord injury from the American Board of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (ABPMR) and has written for the ABPMR SCI Subspecialty Examination for the past three years. Dr. Groah reviews regularly for the Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Spinal Cord, American Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine, and Journal of NeuroTrauma. She has been an expert panel member for the Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) Consortium Guideline on Bladder Management and is currently an expert panel member for the upcoming PVA Consortium Guideline on Carbohydrate and Lipid Disorders after SCI. Dr. Groah has served as an ad-hoc scientific review board member and grant reviewer for The Craig H. Neilsen Foundation. Additionally, Dr. Groah was recently named as one of the 'Best Doctors in America' for the District of Columbia and was nominated for the National Spinal Cord Injury Association's Hall of Fame in 2008.

In addition, she will be the scholarship lecturer at the upcoming 2016 Susan Carter Lecture, being held Wednesday, Nov. 9 at 12 p.m,, in the MedStar NRH Auditorium (102 Irving St., NW, Washington, D.C.) The Susan Carter Lectureship is brought to MedStar NRH by the generous contributions of Susan A. Carter’s family and friends. Carter, a former MedStar NRH polio patient, was honored by MedStar NRH by having the lectureship created in her name. Her family and friends annually underwrite the lecture series, in which recognized rehabilitation researchers, like Dr. Groah, provide professionals and consumers with the latest information about post-polio and other related rehabilitation issues.

MedStar NRH Researcher Barbara S. Bregman Recipient of 2016 Goldschmidt Award

 

WASHINGTON, DC – June 17, 2016 – Barbara S. Bregman, PhD, senior research scientist and director of education and training with MedStar NRH Research Division, and a professor in the Departments of Neuroscience and Rehabilitation Medicine at Georgetown University Medical Center and the Center for Brain Plasticity at Georgetown University, is the recipient of the 28th Annual John W. Goldschmidt Award. Dr. Bregman presented a lecture on Brain Spasticity during the annual program and award ceremony on Friday, June 10 at MedStar NRH’s Irving Street campus.

Dr. Bregman has a long-standing interest in the recovery of function after a traumatic brain injury or spinal cord injury, from both clinical and scientific perspectives. Dr. Bregman received her bachelor’s degree in physical therapy from Russell Sage College in Troy, NY in 1971, and practiced clinically for a number of years, specializing in central nervous system disorders. She received her PhD from the Department of Anatomy at the Medical College of Pennsylvania.

After postdoctoral research training in neural tissue transplantation techniques, Dr. Bregman established an independent research program that has focused on central nervous system development, plasticity, regeneration, and recovery of function after spinal cord injury in neonatal and adult mammals.

Her research program has been internationally recognized and has been NIH-funded for more than 25 years. The long-range goal of her research has been to identify the requirements of developing and mature central nervous system neurons for survival and axonal regeneration after injury and to identify ways to enhance regenerative growth and recovery of function after spinal cord injury at birth or at maturity.

During her lecture, Dr. Bregman discussed the various parts of the brain that helps the body with movement. She compared the human spine to that of a cat’s spine, which she studied in research situations to show how the human nervous system works. She delved into how activity – physical therapy being chief among those activities – can play a crucial role following a central nervous system injury – brain or spinal. “Age and activity are two very critical factors following a central nervous system injury,” said Dr. Bregman, “but activity itself can help determine the nature and extent of plasticity.”

She did all of her research with many other scientists and researchers through the years who she admires and exchanges ideas with. She truly enjoys this type of environment and says it leads to ways to find the best possible results in the field.

“I believe in an environment where there is a strong exchange of ideas and a culture of learning,” said Dr. Bregman, who also helped establish the nationally accredited MedStar NRH/George Washington University Physical Therapy Neuroresidency Program. “This approach changed the way I think about science and ideas.”

She encouraged all of those in attendance to be bold, think big, expect the unexpected and look for positive growth.

“I’m honored to receive this award,” added Dr. Bregman. “I wouldn’t be here receiving this if there were not people in my life that helped me grow, personally and professionally.”

The Goldschmidt Award and Lecture is a prestigious honor at MedStar NRH. It serves to honor the years and effort devoted by MedStar NRH’s founding medical director, John W. Goldschmidt, who worked towards enhancing an interdisciplinary team approach to patient care. The recipients of the award are those who are motivated to positively influence both fields of physical medicine and rehabilitation.

 

About MedStar National Rehabilitation Network

The MedStar National Rehabilitation Network (MedStar NRH) is a regional system of rehabilitation care that offers inpatient, day treatment and outpatient services in Washington, D.C., Maryland and Northern Virginia.

The Network’s interdisciplinary team of rehabilitation experts provides comprehensive services to help people recover as fully as possible following illness and injury.  Rehabilitation medicine specialists, psychologists, physical and occupational therapists, and speech-language pathologists work hand-in-hand with other rehab professionals to design treatment plans tailored to each patient’s unique needs.  Rehabilitation plans feature a team approach and include the use of state-of-the-art technology and advanced medical treatment based on the latest rehabilitation research.  

The Network provides comprehensive programs specifically designed to aid in the rehabilitation of adults and children recovering from neurologic and orthopedic conditions such as amputation, arthritis, back and neck pain, brain injury, cancer, cardiac conditions, concussion, fibromyalgia, foot and ankle disorders, hand and upper extremity problems, post-polio syndrome, stroke, spinal cord injury and disease, and sports and work-related injuries.

Inpatient and day treatment programs are provided at MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital located in Northwest Washington, DC and at more than 50 outpatient sites conveniently located throughout the region.  MedStar NRH is consistently ranked by physicians in U.S. News & World Report as one of America’s “Best Hospitals” for Rehabilitation, and is fully accredited by The Joint Commission,  the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF), with CARF accredited specialty programs for Amputations, Brain Injury, Spinal Cord Injury and Stroke.

For more on MedStar NRH and to find a location near you, log on to MedStarNRH.org.

For Immediate Release

Contact: Derek Berry
Director of Communications
Ph: 202-877-1773
M: 571-218-7594

[email protected]