Alyce-Faye Eichelberger, 13, of West Chester, Pa., was experiencing wrist pain. And it was getting worse — a real concern for anyone, but even more so for an athlete working towards the Olympics.
Olympic Dream Stopped by Pain
A competitive swimmer since the age of 9, Alyce-Faye began having trouble bending her wrists. Until then, she’d been extremely successful, and had been working toward trying out for the Netherlands’ Olympic Team in 2016. Now, that dream was in danger.
Her parents, Annemieke and Martin, quickly sought out medical care. Her primary care doctor recommended Kathleen O’Brien, MD, a pediatric sports medicine specialist at Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children’s Center for Sports Medicine in Wilmington, Del.
The Road to Recovery
Dr. O’Brien recommended therapy to alleviate the pain and swelling, and strengthen the wrist. Through physical therapy and the help of the Center for Sports Medicine, Alyce-Faye was able to do exactly that.
The physical therapists and athletic trainers at the Center for Sports Medicine, the region's largest pediatric sports medicine facility, had experience with a vast array of sports-related conditions. They looked at how Alyce-Faye was using her wrist during her swim stroke, and analyzed the angle of its entry into the water. They recommended some adjustments to her technique, enabling her to lessen the strain, avoid further pain and swelling, and strengthen her wrist.
When she developed a back problem, they were able to help her with that as well, designing a program to strengthen her core and increase her stability.
In fact, the therapy was such a success that Alyce-Faye was able to compete, pain-free, at the Junior Nationals in Holland just three months after starting therapy — winning two bronze medals. Her dream was back and looking better than ever.
Even Better Than Before
After therapy, Alyce-Faye’s mother, Annemieke, says: “… This is a great, great center. It’s not only for elite athletes, but for any child that’s on a team of any kind. They do a great job educating the parents, too.”