Frequently Asked Questions
What is CIT?
Cortical integrative Therapy (CIT) is a revolutionary treatment methodology developed by Dr. Victor M. Pedro after treating a broad range of brain-based disorders and brain injuries for more than 20 years. CIT consists of two phases: diagnostic and therapeutic.
During the diagnostic phase, the patient undergoes a series of comprehensive diagnostic tests, which enable Dr. Pedro to examine the efferent (sensory) neural pathways until he finds the injured or underperforming pathway.
During the therapeutic phase, the patient performs several non-invasive audio, visual, visual-motor and proprioceptive activities that are used to activate and heal the injured or underperforming areas of the brain, or to optimize areas of the brain around the injured/problematic areas. For example, exercises could include visual (eye movement) tracking and pursuit activities, among others.
The healing of the brain is accomplished over time through a series of individualized therapeutic sessions.
Who can CIT help?
CIT can address several health conditions that affect mobility, motor coordination, chronic pain, speech, balance, and other serious difficulties that prevent people from living a productive and fulfilling life.
These conditions include:
Why or how does CIT succeed where other treatment methods have failed?
CIT detects and stabilizes abnormal structural and functional brain lesions – resulting from acquired brain injury or developmental disabilities – much differently than standard medical practices.
To diagnose the area or source of brain dysfunction (or underperformance), CIT uses objective measures to identify functional changes across a wide range of neurological systems (brain domains), including pupillary responses, motor systems, the autonomic system and the vestibular system.
CIT uses an algorithm-based approach to analyze these objective measurements and to more accurately pinpoint the source, scope and severity of neurological damage.
Once a diagnosis is established, Dr. Pedro then determines how best to stabilize and repair brain function using a combination of audio, visual, visual-motor, and proprioceptive activities. A detailed treatment plan includes recommendations for the type, duration, and frequency of noninvasive treatments to help the patient quickly recover optimal brain functionality. Dr. Pedro’s knowledge of neuroanatomy and neurophysiology in combination with his customized treatment plans make the CIT approach an often successful and unique method to treat a variety of neurological disorders.
This approach of precise diagnosis and active treatment is a profound departure from present day medical practices for acquired brain injury and dysfunction, which typically entail passive rest and intermittent monitoring. Rather than managing symptoms, CIT identifies and treats the underlying neurophysiological dysfunction or injury.
Furthermore, CIT can achieve improved brain function without requiring medication or surgery. In addition to its effectiveness, CIT is also:
- cost effective, and
- likely to help patients avoid additional (and costly) therapies due to improved brain functioning (For example, many chronic pain patients come off their medications and no longer require extensive rehabilitation or other supportive services.)
How many patients have you helped using CIT?
We have treated more than 1,000 patients since 2000, when Dr. Pedro pioneered the practice of CIT. Several of our former patients felt compelled to share their testimonials, including singer-songwriter Paula Abdul.
What are my chances for success?
Like any credible medical practice, we cannot guarantee or state each patient’s probability for success. However, our initial evaluation process enables us to identify patients who are likely to benefit from CIT treatment. Furthermore, we accept only those patients we believe we can help.
Unfortunately, we must decline patients who show minimal response during an initial evaluation, as well as those with moderate to severe substance abuse problems, which can significantly reduce positive treatment outcomes. If we can’t help you, we will recommend what we believe is your best course of action.
How does the evaluation process work?
Once it has been determined that you may be a possible candidate for CIT, the next step would be to schedule an in-person, comprehensive evaluation with Dr. Pedro. The evaluation gives us a working hypothesis of how to treat your underlying problem. This evaluation, which can take two to four hours, involves diagnosis and, if warranted, a trial CIT treatment to confirm our diagnosis. Aside from shaping a customized treatment plan, this information allows us to assess your likelihood of success.
What does the evaluation include?
Our comprehensive evaluation includes a thorough medical records review, taking your medical history, and providing physical, orthopedic, and neurological examinations. Diagnostic testing includes balance (Computerized Posturography), eye (Video Nystagmography), and brain sequencing and timing tests using state-of-the-art medical and scientific equipment and software. Each evaluation also includes a written report of our findings (data analysis), a feedback session, and a trial treatment to confirm our working diagnosis.
How long does treatment last?
During the evaluation process, the length and frequency of the treatment will be discussed. Since each treatment plan is individually customized, the duration of treatment may vary from a few days to a more extended amount of time. During treatment, we will continually monitor your progress and will adjust your treatment plan as necessary. You may complete treatment ahead of schedule or you may require more time depending on your progress.
Each treatment session is typically one hour.
Once treatment is complete, what’s next?
Our goal is to promote adaptive plasticity and, therefore, improve the brain’s functioning over time. In addition to treatment sessions, you may be required to do ‘homework’ – a series of assignments and exercises, which will reinforce the treatments received in the office. Our staff will design a series of activities that are specific to each patient.
What specific treatment exercises does CIT consist of?
Patients may undergo a combination of balance (Computerized Posturography), eye (Video Nystagmography), and brain sequencing and timing tests similar to what they experienced during the diagnostic phase. The proportion of these activities depends on the patient’s specific condition and progress being made over the course of treatment.
What types of insurance are accepted?
Group Insurance: CIT is a non-covered service. Patients may pay for services privately if they wish and payment is due the first day treatment begins. We accept cash and checks only. We do not accept credit cards.
Do you provide patient financing?
Not at this time.
Do you need medical records?
It is important for Dr. Pedro and his staff to have a clear understanding of your past and current medical history. Our office will provide you with information on having your medical records released to us.
Are you and your staff multi-lingual?
Yes. Our founder and director, Dr. Victor M. Pedro, is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese. Members of our staff are also fluent in Spanish and Laotian. In addition, we provide qualified interpreters upon request. Please call our office at 401-781-3374.
How do I prepare for my first visit?
Please have any necessary paperwork and medical records forwarded at your earliest convenience so Dr. Pedro and his team have adequate time to review them in advance of your arrival.
What should I wear?
During an evaluation session, which can take two to four hours, you might be required to go through a series of repetitive physical exercises and tests. Please make sure to dress comfortably and wear several layers of clothing.
How far have patients traveled for CIT?
Our patients have traveled from as far as California and overseas, but they typically hail from the mid-Atlantic and northeastern United States.