Return to HDA home page HDA Message Board
HDA About the HDA HDA What is HD HDA Juvenile HD HDA Children & Young People HDA Professionals HDA Resources HDA Research HDA HDA News HDA Events HDA Contact the HDA HDA Home Page

Outside of office hours if you need someone to speak to you can phone the Samaritans on 116 123

Go Back   HDA Message Board > Message Board Categories > Diet, food, equipment

Diet, food, equipment Ask questions or pass on ideas about diet, food and equipment

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 02-02-10, 10:48 AM   #1
Shirleys daughter
Approved Member
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 36
Default Glasses to assist with walking problems

Just read this in todays Daily Mail....they seem expensive but the article may be of interest to someone.

PROBLEM: People with brain conditions such as Parkinson's can find it difficult to keep walking (though this improves if they are following a grid pattern, such as lines on a pavement). This affects their confidence and ability to get around.

SOLUTION: Walking glasses, which look like normal glasses but project a grid. They are powered by a battery in the frame.

EUREKA MOMENT: Clinical engineer Clive Curtis was talking about a Parkinson's disease sufferer who struggled to walk, when he remembered a film scene where an apparently frozen woman crossed a room guided by the pattern of tiles. He wondered if 'cue' lines in glasses might help.

A colleague at Bart's and the London NHS Trust trialled the glasses: two-thirds of patients improved, with some going from shuffling to striding out. Further trials are under way.

'The glasses could cost less than £100, which is minimal compared to the cost of putting someone in a nursing home if they lose their independence because they are unable to walk to the shops,' says Clive.

Walking glasses, tel: 020 7377 7000.

Shirley's Daughter
Shirleys daughter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-02-10, 07:34 PM   #2
Approved Member
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 173
Default Re: Glasses to assist with walking problems

Very interesting!
Suki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-02-10, 09:36 PM   #3
Approved Member
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 2,184
Default Re: Glasses to assist with walking problems

Message from Trish

I haven't been able to find the Daily Mail article on line but I believe the film referred to in this post is the 1990 Film Awakenings starring Robin Willaims and Robert de Niro (My fave film of all time!) It's based on a true story and Robin's character - Dr Oliver Sacks - is still working hard on understanding diseases including HD.

The following links take you to a clip from Awakenings. I couldn't find the English version easily but, even though it's dubbed in spannish I am sure you willl see where the glasses idea comes from.

The second link is Dr Sacks talking. I'm sure you will agree he is an amazing guy!
Fetchez la vache.
DH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-02-10, 10:35 PM   #4
Approved Member
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 2,184
Default Re: Glasses to assist with walking problems

Message from Trish (she totally accepts she may have too much time on her hands and needs to discover daytime TV again).

In another thread I have highlighted the importance of the nasal passages being kept clear (Link below)

In this thread I have referred to Dr Sackís work.

One of the things Dr Sacks explains in a talk (link given below) is where the body/brain compensates for loss of skills. In essence here and in many of his books/writings he shows the human being is amazing insofar as we can kind of speed up our own evolution to adapt where necessary.

If one part of the body is not functioning it calls on other parts of the body to help fill in the gaps. We have all heard of blind people whose sense of touch and hearing is extremely acute.

In the link Dr Sacks talks of a man whose reading part of the brain was damaged and therefore words became gobbledygook. However, when he started reading with his tongue, outlining the letters/words in his mouth sending messages to a different route to his brain, the words could be read. It was as though the reading skill circumnavigated the normal route to find its pathway.

It got me thinking even more that in cases such as, HD, where a personís deterioration leads to the lack of other means, it is imperative that we maintain the senses of sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell. The latter two are intrinsically linked of course.
To add to the mix though I also feel there is another side of the body and its use of the senses. A kinder, compassionate survival evolution.

This week I had the Dr check on my husband who has developed a rash across his back and shoulders. It has turned out to be eczema.

I have been given creams and lotions and am told the rash will clear up quite quickly. Having been brought up with a brother who had infantile eczema and asthma I can say for certain my brother was constantly crying because of the itching. He couldnít scratch himself and even had to wear mittens in bed to stop him ripping his skin with his nails. Needless to say Hubby hasnít been able to scratch himself either but I can genuinely say he has shown no signs of discomfort.

I can also think of times he has fallen and seemed to have hurt himself (cuts bleeding etc) However, he has not shown any signs of pain. Itís as if the body has switched off a sense having acknowledged the situation where he has limited option to deal with the pain and decided sometimes itís best to switch off and on senses as need be.

Just a thought...
Fetchez la vache.
DH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-10, 04:50 PM   #5
Approved Member
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 2,184
Default Re: Glasses to assist with walking problems

Message from Trish:

Hi guys. Earlier in this thread I set a link to the Awakenings although the excerpt was dubbed in Spanish. I have found the film excerpts in English. However, the Spanish version does show the relevant part altogether whereas this shows it in the reel-time of the film hence the time prompts to scroll to.

Scroll to 08:08 runs to end

Opening part then scroll to 06:16

Trish x
Fetchez la vache.
DH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-10, 10:44 PM   #6
Scarlett D.
Approved Member
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: London
Posts: 796
Default Re: Glasses to assist with walking problems

Thank you, Shirley's Daughter and also everyone else who has been postin info - all very interesting!

But I must say, those glasses sound very "sci fi" to me, LOL!

Take Care,
Scarlett D. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-02-10, 04:06 PM   #7
Approved Member
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 2,184
Default Re: Glasses to assist with walking problems

They may not be the exact same glasses but below is a link for a product from PDGlasses. Anyone remember the TV series 'Joe 90'?

From the demonstration it seems you have to kep altering them as you go. How easy that would be for someone with trembling hands is anyone's guess!

Hopefully the ones referred to in the initial article are a lot less heavy and less complicated.
Fetchez la vache.
DH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-02-10, 04:28 PM   #8
Approved Member
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 4
Default Re: HD


My grandfather died of HD in 1963 and my father died in 1990. I was quite young and knew it wouldn't affect me until my later life, so instead of worrying every day for twenty odd years, I refused tests.
Last year, I began to experience horribly familiar signs and symptoms; concentration difficulties, coordination, dropping things, breaking some things. I forget I did things, such as putting my tea on. Once I went into another room, I was distracted and forgot my tea. I would end up with a burnt offering. Now I have a ringer. I forget I made a drink, if I can't see it.
I'm also experiencing OBS, straightening everything, more than just being tidy. I'm starting to get into routines.
I knew it was HD, but put off going to the GPs for a few months. Finally, I did go to my GP. I also saw a neurologist, a genetic councillor and a psychotherapist. I had the genetic test to confirm it at the end of last year.
I now see a psychotherapist every two weeks and a health visitor visits once a week. I live on my own, so have plenty of time to worry. I don't sleep nights. I bottle it all up. The signs and symptoms will get worse and I will suffer more in a few years. There is no cure, so I will die in about ten years. I saw my dad die, so know how bad it can get and it is frightening me. Consequently, my inner turmoil is pretty awful.
I'm now retired from work at 50. I've completed a mountain of forms and paper work to get the relevant benefits, although I had to find them out myself.
I've lost my motivation and have trouble getting up and organised, which isn't like me. If I go anywhere, I smile and put on a brave face, but nobody knows. I don't have any family now and very few friends. I'm taking anti depressants, to try and help my motivation.
The nearest HD help is out of town. My psychotherapist is organising a new research network, to channel any new research information into one place. I've been asked to help.
They haven't found a cure since my granddad died in 1963. I don't believe they will in the near future either. Sadly, all the charity money goes on research for cancer, Alzheimerís, heart disease, Parkinsonís, MS, etc. Nobody has heard of HD.

I'd be interested in hearing from anyone with it and learn how to cope better.

Kind regards,

Ian H.
IanH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-10, 10:22 PM   #9
Approved Member
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: leyland lancashire
Posts: 1,202
Default Re: Glasses to assist with walking problems

thhese glasses souund fab to me!!
kayleigh is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT +1. The time now is 04:19 PM.

About the HDA Message Board

A UK-based forum for people whose lives are affected by Huntington's disease and wish to share their experiences with others. Moderated by SHDAs from the HDA, a UK registered charity.

Please Remember

The HDA Message Board is not a substitute for professional advice. Consult a relevant professional before making decisions that could affect you or others.

Donate to HDA

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Registered Charity No. 296453. Website Content © HDA 2010