SPIO Compression Clothing (Orthosis)
Products available at Sensory Souk
How SPIO® Began
Our earliest experiences in flexible compression bracing began in the mid 1980’s. In 1994, thanks to seamstress Cheryl Allen and therapist Nancy Hylton, we began a deeper exploration of this therapeutic tool.
Cheryl's son Brian was receiving physical therapy treatment from Nancy, who was providing hands-on deep pressure that helped Brian. Cheryl began a quest to find a material that could “mimic” Nancy’s deep pressure, eventually creating Lycra pressure shorts for Brian. Wearing the shorts significantly improved Brian’s ability to control movement and bear weight through his trunk and lower extremities.
Cheryl’s second son, Ian, had early sensory-motor difficulties, including abnormally rigid posture, impaired postural control, movement difficulties, and marked hypersensitivity to environmental stimuli. When he was 3 months old, Ian began physical therapy with Nancy Hylton. By 10 months, Ian could sit alone for several seconds but did not have any transitional movements or a means of floor mobility.
One morning during therapy, Nancy wrapped Ian several times with a four-inch wide Ace Wrap diagonally from one shoulder, between his legs, and up to the other shoulder, finishing off with circular wraps around his trunk. When she placed Ian on the floor, he immediately began to commando crawl. Cheryl went home and made Ian a Lycra body suit that duplicated the effect of the Ace Wrap. Within a week, Ian was rocking on his hands and knees and crawling reciprocally.
Wearing his body suit, Ian was less easily over-stimulated by environmental noises. He began to explore his environment in a much more secure and meaningful way. When the Lycra was removed, Ian began to lose function. With the Lycra, a more organized motor plan emerged, and Ian gradually began to show more carryover in function when the Lycra body suit was off. Today Ian can function with his suit off. However, he continues to function better with it on.
By 1996 SPIO® orthoses were being custom made by Cheryl for many of Nancy’s patients. Today, schools, hospitals and therapy centers in 24 countries are using SPIO® orthoses. What started as a small company outside Seattle has grown into an internationally respected business.
SPIO’s parent company, Children's Therapy Center originated in 1979. It was started by pediatric therapists recognizing the need for facilities that could enhance the development of children born with special needs through quality early intervention services and parent training. Through dedication, passion, and community support, Children's Therapy Center has grown into a nonprofit consortium of organizations collaborating to empower children and families. The consortium is currently comprised of Children's Therapy Center, SKIP Early Intervention Program, Dymamic Labs (winner of the 2011 Zino Society Award for Social Innovation) and SPIO®. All profits made through the sales of SPIO® are used to help fund Children Therapy Center's mission of serving children with special needs and their families.
SPIO® Stands Alone
We use a high quality, specially milled fabric that is lightweight, wick-able and breathable. The unique SPIO® fabric has high rebound and strong neutral memory that assists the wearer in returning their body to mid-line. Custom-made SPIO® orthoses are available by request.
SPIO® orthoses provide a stronger compression ratio than other products, and:
• Look good
• Feel comfortable
• Fit like a second skin
• Move when the wearer moves
• Work for patients of all ages
• Give the best possible results
SPIO® is constantly developing and improving. We cooperate closely with clinics, orthotists, physical therapists, occupational therapists and doctors.
SPIO® orthoses are protected under U.S. Patents #5782790, #5957873, 29/581,245, 29/581,246, 29/581,248, D820991, D8215901, and D813,403S and are registered with the FDA as a Class 1 Medical Device. Because it is an orthotic - not a garment - it may be reimbursable through insurance if ordered by an orthotist or Durable Medical Equipment (DME) provider.
At SPIO® our bottom line is both financial and social:
• All products are made locally in Seattle, WA
• We pay a livable wage, not just minimum wage
• We believe in fair labor practices
• We participate in our local community by sponsoring and volunteering for local non-profit fundraising events
Certifications and Memberships