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June Spasmodic Dysphonia Treatment Clinic 2014
Darlene: AD/SD onset in January 2001, initial diagnosis of acid reflux, followed by possible SD by a neurologist. Diagnosis confirmed by Dr. Andrew Blitzer, who administered botox every 3-9 months as needed. Botox became less effective over time.
“I read Connie’s books and began doing voice exercises and following her advice three months ago. I was making progress but had difficulty maintaining a good voice for more than a few sentences. I was really discouraged and felt I had hit a brick wall. This clinic was a life-changing experience and gave me an incredible number of tools, tips, and tricks to use to get my good voice in any situation. The camaraderie of spending 5 days with other people who not only understand and accept me for who I am, but constantly share things that help them is an experience I couldn’t get from a book. It has been one of the best experiences of my life. I can’t explain the quality of the time spent with Connie, Dennis and Christine – everyday there were new revelations and strategies to help me become free to speak.
If you have SD and are struggling, you owe it to yourself to come to this clinic and get the tools you need to get on the right path. It’s absolutely priceless and worth every penny!
The instructors were all tremendous and I learned so much from each of them. They are caring wonderful people who not only are constantly trying to see what else they can do to help your particular problems, they do this in a warm, compassionate, fun manner. Everyone with SD owes it to themselves to do this! It was more than I expected!”
VO: AD/SD with essential tremor, Fall 2008 at the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix. Botox was initiated February 2009 and continued through July 2013 with varied results, good voice 3 months at best and no improvement at worst. She had some voice therapy as well.
Reported significant improvement in breathing and voice, and rated improvement at 50% at the clinic.
“The holistic focus on mind and body – the integration of positive language and how that influences physical and mental states was good. The integration of all aspects into physical and emotional health and how it affects voice was helpful.
Peer support was invaluable – to spend time with others with this voice disorder and to hear their stories, share in their joy and relate to their struggles, while seeing them improve was a key factor at the clinic. I will take hope and inspiration if I feel myself slipping into negativity. They were a great group of instructors. I am so thankful to Connie, Dennis, and Christine. It was my pleasure to spend time with them and learn from them. I loved the Saturday night karoke and Sunday morning devotional sharing.”
Kevin: AD/SD, onset in late 2009, took over a year to be diagnosed. Botox injections from February 2011 until January 2014 with variable results. Voice therapy. Initial consult with Connie, privately and felt he was “cured”, but regressed when he returned to work.
“This five day group clinic was transformational. It was one of the most valuable, fun, inspiring, relaxing and memorable experiences of my life. Anyone with a significant voice disorder would benefit greatly from this program. It was hands down the most valuable experience I have ever had for my SD voice disorder. I would not have learned to function without botox treatments without this program. Before, I was lost with respect to my SD. Now I am confident that I can retake control of my own voice. On a scale of 1-10, I would give this experience an 11!!
Our class became extremely close with this amazing group of people. Before this program I had actually never met anyone else with SD. We all could relate to each other’s experiences so well. We became an amazing support group and our collective spirit lifted us all to new heights.
I am leaving this program feeling peaceful, confident, and liberated. Thanks to Connie, Dennis, Christine and my amazing classmates!
Michael: Focal dystonia/SD. Isolated incident 1993; gradual progression 1999, with more consistent dysphonia since 2000. Voice therapy. Neurology consult and botox to base of tongue twice, which caused dysarthria. Various drug therapies ineffective. January 2011, botox was administered at the Cleveland Clinic until July 2013 with various results and losing effectiveness over time.
“The June clinic was the first time since my diagnosis almost ten years ago that I felt the most realistic hope and more importantly, reasonable expectation that I could mitigate/correct dysphonic tendencies to the extent that I can return to a “normal” voice handicap index score and thereby freeing my bondage to this severely debilitating condition.
I have a significant confidence factor that I can take Connie Pike’s intensive voice rehabilitation clinic home with me to seamlessly transition into the self-fulfillment and restoration of my God-given voice again for the first time in over 14 years.
Connie and her team have given me the knowledge and assurance that the five days I spent in Apollo Beach was more efficacious in the restoration of my normal voice than all of my visits to the US Navy, Wake Forest, University of Virginia, Eastern Virginia Medical School, and the Cleveland Clinic over the past 10 years + that I have been seeking professional medical therapy for my condition.
As of this writing, I characterize my professional care, assessment and prescribed dysphonia therapy regime as priceless. I am now confident that I am finally on the road to a normal voice again.”
Naomi: AD/SD Onset May 2010 and diagnosed in May 2011 by Dr. John Rubin in London. Botox injections every 3 months since June 2011, voice therapy, laryngeal massage, osteopathic treatment, acupuncture, psychotherapy, yoga.
“If you are wondering whether to come to this clinic – then the answer is simple. Stop wondering and start doing. You can take control of SD. I’ve come from the UK and for a year, I’ve put many barriers up as to why I wouldn’t come: It’s not in my country. It’s too far, a big investment with no guarantee it’ll work, the cost of international flights, hotel, etc. Then one day after a particularly bad time with my voice and after trying so many alternative methods in addition to regular botox injections, I thought – Just Do It!
I can safely say its one of the best things I’ve ever done. Within a day of being in the clinic, I realized I do have a quality voice – it’s just trapped inside me due to the bad habits SD gives you (tension, forcing the noise, breath holding). At the clinic you learn so many techniques. You are equipped with a tool box from which you can choose what works best for you in order to set your voice free.
The team is open, not judgmental, caring and helpful. There is a sense of calmness, contentment, peacefulness and above all, positivity. The encouragement and confidence you draw from your peers attending the course with you is so beneficial. Within this group, I felt extremely happy and free to speak! I’ve made new friends who understand the emotional challenges of SD. I have drawn inspiration from them in addition to the clinic team.
I accept my voice and feel energized and committed to regrooving. Stop saying ‘I can’t’ and start saying ‘I can’.
Come to this clinic if you want to break free of your current SD voice prison. This truly has changed my life. If there is one thing I’d do differently, it is to have come sooner. I leave feeling happy and inspired.