Steady Improvements for Genetic Disorder
Gloria McCahill first began working with Ian Cali in 2013 to address symptoms associated with fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP), a rare genetic condition that causes muscles, tendons, and other connective tissues to form into bone. Ian struggled with stress, pain, limited movement, and difficulty sleeping.
Working with Gloria using different energy medicine and intuitive healing techniques, Ian experienced noticeable improvements in his energy levels, pain, and mobility after just a few months, as outlined in this case study.
Now, in 2019, Ian states, "Not only have all of the benefits and changes we documented proved consistent over the years, but my body has continued to change and get better."
The photo above shows Ian, Gloria, and Dr. Fred Kaplan (Isaac and Rose Nassau Professor of Orthopaedic Molecular Medicine & Chief of the Division of Molecular Orthopaedic Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine). Dr. Kaplan has been a pioneer in FOP research, personally spearheading the efforts that led to the discovery of the FOP gene, among many other things.
This photo was taken after Ian and Dr. Kaplan spoke to the first-year medical students at the University of Pennsylvania as part of their genetics course (which they have done many times over the years). Based on her success with Ian and other FOP clients, Gloria has also been asked to attend the lecture for the past couple years to make herself a valuable resource to the students interested in complementary medicine.
Charting Ian's Progress Over the Years
Gloria felt it was important for Ian to verbalize his own perception of his progress, so the following case study is an update submitted in Ian's own words.
"The past 6 years of working with Gloria have been a wild ride," says Ian. "I mean that in the best way possible."
Although FOP can get better in the sense that a patient’s symptoms are relieved, it is rare to see the dramatic improvements experienced by Ian where the body's composition changes, the heterotopic ossification breaks down, muscle mass redevelops, and movement noticeably increases.
"That being said," says Ian, "I have dedicated a lot of time and effort to taking notes, doing all of the little daily exercises I can as consistently as possible, and instructing other people to help me when applicable. Gloria has also spent an enormous amount of time and effort communicating with me, thinking outside the box, taking classes, and doing virtual meetings with a few other FOP clients."
A Paradigm Shift for the FOP Community
One of the biggest changes Ian has experienced and that those around him have also noticed is his walk.
"In 2013, 'walking' was a generous word for how I moved," says Ian. "It was more of a concentrated hobble. In more technical terms, my walk was considered a step-to as opposed to the usual step-through."
This means that he'd step with his right foot and quickly shift weight to his left foot, only to quickly shift his right foot forward again. His gait was irregular and dysfunctional, his steps were short, and his pace was slow.
"Fast forward to now, and I am walking consistently with a step-through where my gait is much more normal, my left foot now reaches the same distance as my right foot, my strides have gotten longer and my pace is faster and smoother," says Ian. "This is all pretty unbelievable progress considering in August of 2018, I broke C6 in my neck and 7 inches of my right femur."
Because surgery can exacerbate FOP symptoms, it is a last resort, and thus Ian decided to recover without surgery. While he had to live 24/7 in bed for the better part of 3 months without any weight-bearing, he stood up for the first time after 9.5 weeks.
"That’s 9.5 weeks of no drugs, no surgery, and no casts—just energy medicine sessions with Gloria, and natural stress and pain management techniques," says Ian.
Overall, Ian has experienced vast improvements in both his physical and mental condition since he started working with Gloria.
"I feel lighter and much less constricted than I was 6 years ago," he says.
Both of his arms have gotten bigger due to muscle mass returning and his arms filling out, and they have also gained movement that they didn’t have in 2013.
His legs have both grown in size and mass, and his back has gotten straighter with less irregularities throughout. His face looks different – most noticeably at his cheekbones and forehead where heterotopic ossification by FOP has broken down.
"When Gloria and I first started, we worked hard to get my body to change its habits and hold the progress we’d make," says Ian.
For the last handful of years, Gloria has split her time between New Jersey and Arizona, which has resulted in them seeing each other significantly less often than when they started working together.
"At first, her move made us both a bit anxious as we thought maybe my body would fall into its old habits again," says Ian. "Yet, to our surprise, my body has proved to have no problem holding the progress we make when we are together and in fact, it continues to change for the better during our time away."
In addition, his body has not had the infamous overreaction to any pain, trauma, accidents, and flare ups over the past 6 years, which is extremely rare, if not unheard of, in the rest of the FOP community. Historically, FOP is considered a progressive disease that typically only gets worse.
According to Ian, his progress "is a massive paradigm shift for someone involved in or close to the FOP community."
- Submitted by Gloria McCahill and Ian Cali