Elly de Jongh (69) closes a painful time suffering from shingles
“I am now virtually pain free and can move my arm again”

Elly de Jongh (69) from Rhoon had a very different Christmas season in mind when in mid-December she was struck by an acute form of shingles (postherpetic zoster neuralgia). When ibuprofen failed to alleviate the pain and numerous lumps started covering her arm, Elly visited the central out-of-hours surgery on Saturday 16 December. The attending doctor prescribed valaciclovir for the shingles and tramadol and paracetamol to relieve the pain. ‘I should have been clear of it after three or four weeks.’ On the contrary, the pain in Elly’s arm actually kept getting worse.

Many analgesic medicines
Desperate, the day after Christmas Elly went to her GP, who prescribed her pregabalin. She was also referred to the pain clinic, but the earliest they could see her was on 9 January. ‘Fortunately, the pregablin did a reasonable job in suppressing the pain somewhat.’ Still, the 69 year old from Rhoon was not happy with the situation. ‘It remained extremely painful and I did not like having to take all those medications. After all, it is a kind of ‘poison’ that you’re swallowing. On 2 January, Elly therefore decided to phone the Van der Kuil Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center. ‘My husband and I have been going there for 20 years, in part to help my husband with his hernia and prostrate problems. To be honest, I didn’t expect them to know much about shingles, but the receptionist reassured me that they could successfully treat the condition. Moreover, they could see me the next day.

Almost pain free and more energy
Three months later, the mood is quite different in the De Jongh residence. ‘The first three weeks of January, I had two treatments a week with the GyroStim. After that, I had one treatment a week until the beginning of March. The GyroStim is a computer-driven multi-axis rotating chair that doctors use to help patients with a variety of impairments. The treatment also included a course of supplements. ‘I take vitamin C, vitamin B-complex, D-Toxinex, a premium (UDP47) walnut oil supplement as well as CTX Cannelex, a pure cannabis oil. They made me feel a lot better than all those painkillers. My resistance is rebounding and I’m feeling more energetic. I would say that 95% of the pain is now gone.’ Thankfully, Elly again has normal use of her arm. ‘Apart from being pain-free, regaining the use of my arm was a relief. For weeks household chores fell onto the shoulders of my husband and daughter because I couldn’t use my right arm.

Positive experiences
Elly is extremely positive about the Van der Kuil Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center. ‘We’ve had good experiences with attending physician, Ronald van der Kuil, for 20 years now. He is highly professional and honest. He raises realistic expectations and puts patients’ minds at ease. If we get any medical problems in the future, he’s the first person we will call.

Sometimes disaster strikes twice

In 1983, Martin Ebell was involved in a serious skiing accident. After a year-long course of treatment, Martin still had pain and was restricted in what he could do. And there was another dark cloud hanging over his head. It would only be a matter of time before he was declared incapacitated for work. Martin decided not to wait until it came to that, and after searching for effective medical help, came across Ronald van der Kuil, who was then still working as a chiropractor. Seven years of treatment later, Martin is his old self again.

Bruised and battered
At the age of 64, disaster struck for a second time. Martin fell from a height of two metres and landed on the ground with both legs outstretched. Bruised and battered, Martin went back to Ronald van der Kuil, who had by now founded the Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center. After listening to Martin tell him about his symptoms, Van der Kuil sent him to a neurologist for an extensive examination. The scans and supplementary examinations revealed that multiple blood clots in the brain were causing transient ischemic attacks (TIA). This temporary closure of a blood vessel in the brain has serious consequences. Martin faced hearing loss on the right side of his head, strokes and collapsing under physical strain. The impact of the fall sent a damaging shockwave through his system, right up to the brain.

High-tech computer-driven chair
Martin went back to the Van der Kuil Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center with the results of the neurological examination. ‘At the centre, they made it very clear to me that the treatment would be protracted,’ says Martin. ‘Together we went about determining the right treatment frequency and optimum interval period. This in combination with exercises I did at home.’ Martin visited the medical centre specialised in brain disorders every three to four months for treatment on his neck and shoulders, followed by a session in the GyroStim. The GyroStim is a computer-driven multi-axis rotating chair that doctors use to help patients with a variety of impairments.

Cooperating towards recovery
After his previous good experiences with Van der Kuil, Martin is delighted that he turned to the Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center. ‘Ronald van der Kuil, who attended to me, and I developed a relationship based on mutual trust during my long treatment period. I have honestly experienced this treatment is a collaboration. Practising yoga for 14 years has helped me become aware of my body. It allows me accurately sense what’s right or wrong in my body and communicate this to others. We have adapted the treatment to this and I’m certainly benefiting from this approach. The future now looks bright for Martin. ‘I can do everything again. I’m enjoying my retirement together with my wife.’

Gerry van Nuland (64) is making excellent progress on all fronts
“I was told in the hospital that I would just have to learn to live with my symptoms.”

‘When I speak about the progress I’ve made with U treatments in the Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center, I’m sometimes conscious of how implausible it must seem to others. I can barely believe it myself. For me, it feels like a miracle. I’m happy that the people around me have also noticed the tremendous progress I’ve made.’ Gerry van Nuland (64), speaks about his laundry list of medical complaints with a sense of understatement.

Prostate cancer and staphylococcal bacteria
‘I had prostate cancer and, either during or after an operation, I contracted staphylococcal bacteria, which caused severe pain in my shoulder blade.’ Though the course of antibiotics in the hospital worked, the pain didn’t subside completely. As a matter of fact all kinds of side effects appeared, including side effects that affected my intestines and adrenal glands which upset my metabolism. ‘And I developed an autoimmune condition.’ As if the pains in his right shoulder were not enough, the array of symptoms meant that Gerry was constantly fatigued. ‘I run an administrative and consultancy firm and was used to occasionally working 80 hours a week. It had never been a problem. But that was now totally out of the question. I just had no energy reserves left. After each meal, I would need to sit down for 15 minutes just to regain some strength.

Learning to live with symptoms
In the hospital, Gerry was told that he would just have to learn to live with his symptoms. ‘But that wasn’t an option for me.’ So after a business associate related their positive experiences, Gerry didn’t waste any time making an appointment with the Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center in Lisse. ‘I remember well that the attending physician, Ronald van der Kuil, immediately saw that I had a problem with my eyes. About five years ago I did in fact suffer from a retinal detachment, meaning I can no longer produce tears and have become ultra-sensitive to light. As a result, I need to put drops in my eyes two to three times every hour.

Right-side deviation
According to Gerry, the attending physician was quickly able establish a diagnosis following a series of balance exercises. ‘My cerebellum turned out to have a minor skew deviation to the right.’  When Gerry heard the diagnosis, a number of pieces of the puzzle fell into place. ‘I did indeed have a slight deviation to the right. For example, when I was in military service, I would always shoot slightly to the right of the target. After the attending physician performed a number of minor neurological applications on him, he had his first experience with the GyroStim. This is a computer-driven chair that can rotate around multiple axes.

Improved blood levels
Following these treatments combined with a course of Flamex, which suppresses inflammatory reactions in the stomach and intestines, as well as XO-7 (a premium salmon oil), Gerry’s improvement was clearly after four treatments. The pain in my shoulder has subsided considerably and I have a lot more energy again. I really feel so much better in every way. Take my eyes, for example. I no longer have to apply eye drops two to three times every hour, but two to three times a day. And my blood levels have improved spectacularly,’ says Gerry, pointing to the results of the tests the attending physician carries out before and after the GryoStim treatments. ‘My oxygen uptake has strongly improved, as have my blood thickness and pressure. That was 156 over 110, and after for treatments, is now 123 over 78. That is really quite an achievement for someone my age.’

Blockages cleared
It means a lot to Gerry that his natural healer, who he visits in parallel with the Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center, also says that his progress is impressive. ‘She established that the original blockages between my cells, caused by my autoimmune disease and all the antibiotics I was on, are now fully cleared. This means I am absorbing vitamins again, which has really boosted my energy levels. I have so much energy in fact that I can easily cycle 80 kilometres with my bike club.’

Tackling the cause
Gerry sees a major difference between conventional medical science and the approach of the Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center. ‘Hospitals treat the symptoms, but they don’t tackle the cause of the ailment. The Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center takes a totally different approach. There the cause of the ailment informs the treatment. Moreover, the centre closely examines the link between the different symptoms, whereas in hospitals specialists are only interested in their ‘own specialist area’. So, as you can imagine, I’m very happy I found my way to the centre in Lisse.

Falling on the asphalt

In December 2015, Marjo Sweijen was involved in a traffic accident. She fell from her bike, hitting her head hard on the asphalt. The fall was such that she lost consciousness. In addition to several broken ribs and a serious shoulder bruise, Marjo was concussed. It soon became apparent that the consequences of the concussion were far more serious than the physiological symptoms arising from the broken ribs and bruised shoulder. Marjo is plagued by attacks of dizziness and has a limited ability to bear physical strain. Furthermore, she has developed a high sensitivity to stimuli of all her senses and is far more emotional than previously.

Difficult reintegration
In late 2016, after suffering from the symptoms for more than a year, Marjo attempted to resume her own physiotherapy practice as best she could. This reintegration proved extremely difficult, however. ‘Whereas before I would schedule an average of 14 appointments each day, treating two patients a day was now too much for me,’ says Marjo. Marjo read an article that related positive experiences with the Van der Kuil Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center in a specialist journal in late 2016. Having to live each day with the debilitating consequences of her concussion, Marjo decided it was worth giving the medical centre that specialised brain disorders a try. During her intake interview in January 2017, the extent of Marjo’s functional limitations became clear.

Quick first result
‘I was living like a zombie, barely able to do anything,’ is how Marjo remembers this dark period in her life. After the first treatment at the Van der Kuil Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center, Marjo noticed that ‘something’ was happening. ‘I did an eye muscle exercise and noticed afterwards that my eyes seemed different. It’s not that I had had poor vision, but after the exercise my eyes had improved focus.

Positive experiences
Marjo is extremely positive about the Van der Kuil Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center. ‘They are professionals who really know what they are doing. I find myself pleasantly surprised about their expertise and focused way of working. If you ask me, people should be paying far more attention to the good results they are achieving here. Marjo now dares to be cautiously optimistic about the future. ‘We aren’t there yet, but I’ve been working at 50% of my former level since the autumn of 2017. I still need to be careful about my mental state, but my physical condition has improved by leaps and bounds.

Nicky (4) conquers speech disorder
“She already spoke her first words during the second visit”

The longer little Nicky’s parents had to wait for their daughter to utter her first words, the greater their concerns grew. ‘When Nicky was three years old, she could hardly speak,’ says mother Suzanne Clemens-Verberkt. At the time, doctors had no plausible explanation for Nicky’s speech problems. The health centre referred Suzanne to the hospital for a hearing test. The family also consulted a psychologist. The test revealed that there was nothing wrong with Nickey’s hearing. The psychologist was also unable to establish a cause for Nicky’s speech disorder (a neurological growth retardation). In desperation, Suzanne called on the help of the Van der Kuil Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center in Lisse.

Next-day appointment
That moment marked the end of a stressful period for Nicky’s parents. ‘Nicky always played alone in the day-care centre. She didn’t make a sound. The few times she tried to say something, she just couldn’t,’ say Suzanne. ‘And as the other children grew older, you could see they started finding it funny. That’s difficult to deal with as a mother.’ But Suzanne was pleasantly surprised when making an appointment at the Van der Kuil Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center. ‘I was able to go the next day with Nicky.’ This experience was the opposite of the long waiting times she had become so accustomed to at the hospital. ‘A five-month waiting time was nothing unusual.’

Full confidence
Having completed the questionnaire, Suzanne and daughter Nicky were at the Van der Kuil Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center the next day. ‘What I remember most of that first visit is that the attending physician, Ronald van der Kuil, won Nicky’s confidence in no time. She underwent the first examinations fairly calmly and she seemed very much at ease.’ Van der Kuil diagnosed a disorder in the activity between the brainstem and the speech centre. To Suzanne’s amazement, Nicky took a seat in the GyroStim without protesting in the least. The GyroStim is a computer-driven multi-axis rotating chair that doctors use to help patients with a variety of impairments.

Great progress
If anything, Suzanne’s experience of the second visit with even more positive. ‘Nicky skipped along and practically hopped into the GyroStim. Furthermore, Nicky started saying a few words.’ And she would start speaking more frequently as the treatments went on. Eventually, eight treatments turned out to be sufficient to treat the disorder in the activity between Nicky’s brainstem and speech centre. ‘She also started speaking heaps when playing with her dolls. When she gets very excited, she tends to want to do too much at once and can then be difficult to understand,’ says Suzanne, who is delighted with the progress her daughter has made. ‘She currently goes three days a week to a treatment centre, where she gets speech therapy. At the centre, she is with other children with DLD, a language development disorder.

Feeling better.
Despite Nicky’s great progress, Suzanne finds it difficult to witness the frustration expressed by other young DLD patients. ‘It’s quite upsetting to see young children laying down on the ground to scream out their frustrations.’ In any event, Suzanne couldn’t be happier with Nicky’s progress. ‘Nicky is the first child from the treatment group who doesn’t need special education. She can go to a regular school.’ People who know the family have also seen Nicky improve before their eyes. ‘These are people who know Nicky’s background and who now sometimes say that they can’t tell there was something wrong. You also feel better as a mother when you see your kid thriving.

Chronic fatigue makes way for renewed energy
“Both my daughter and I have greatly benefited from the treatments”

‘I was always tired and could fall asleep at any time of day. I couldn’t get through the day without a nap. Sleeping 12 hours a day was very normal,’ says Wilco van Hemert (46) from Brakel in North Brabant. ‘At a certain point, my energy level was so low that I even had to stop cycle racing. That was a real low point.’ In addition to chronic mental and physical fatigue, Wilco had also struggled for years with the cold, excessive mucus build-up and uncomfortable sinusitis.

Second time with skiing
Hearing the positive experiences of others he knew, Wilco decided to pay a visit to the Functional Neurology & Vestibular Rehabilitation Center in Lisse. ‘Incidentally, the reason for that first visit was because my daughter wasn’t feeling well. She was dyslexic, was bullied at school and was always tired.’ After eight treatments, Wilco noticed an enormous improvement. ‘My daughter now has a different look in her eyes and is full of energy again.’ To show us what he means, Wilco tells us about her remarkable improvement in competitive skiing. ‘She was always last or second to last, but she came in tenth during the most recent Dutch championship competition. Two weeks after the championship, she even set the second time in one of her runs. That would have been unimaginable before. It’s wonderful that she now feels so much better.’

Nothing helped
Prompted by the positive treatment results of his daughter, Wilco also decided to speak to the attending physician, Ronald van der Kuil, about his own symptoms. ‘By that point, I had tried so many things and alternative treatments, I had started to lose heart.’ After five treatments with the GyroStim, and supplementary functional neurological applications, combined with the course of vitamin B-Complex, XO-7 (a special salmon oil) and Gabax, Wilco’s outlook has made a dramatic U-turn. ‘Though I still go to bed on time in the evenings, I can get through the day without my nap. My inflammation problems are nowhere near as bad and the mucus build-up has gone right down.’

Cycle racing is back on
Wilco has even been able to carefully pick up his old favourite pastime again: cycle racing. ‘I am no longer plagued by the constant muscle pain in one buttock caused by sitting unbalanced in the saddle.” Thanks to the treatments with the GyroStim, a high-tech computer-driven multi-axis rotating chair, Wilco is now able to apply equal pressure to each pedal. ‘That saves me a lot of muscle pain.’

Business as usual
The employees of a successful poultry business have also noticed Wilco’s improved physical condition. Before if I started at six or six-thirty, I really needed to take a rest at nine. It’s a lot better now.’ Looking back, Wilco’s believes that it was the success of his business that caused him to continue ignoring his symptoms. ‘The profit margins were good. And because I have 20 staff, I didn’t need to be there myself all the time. It wasn’t a disaster if I needed to go home for a sleep.’

Dealing with tensions and stress
Wilco is now better able to deal with tensions and stress and the future looks bright. ‘I’m glad I decided to have Ronald van der Kuil examine my symptoms. He listened to me carefully and developed an effective treatment plan. I have a couple more treatments ahead of me, but it’s a joy to get into the car for the hour and forty-five minute drive to the treatment centre in Lisse.