GSH What to Expect

Patient Stories

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Discover how Gaylord's setting provides a restorative, healing environment for our patients and their families. For details and videos about specific programs see the individual program pages. 

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Click the links below see videos and  written stories about patients recoveries from serious illness or injury. 

Amputation

Jane, a nurse, was on vacation in St. Lucia when she was bitten by bug during the night. She started feeling like she had the flu and then she had to be carried onto her plane home. The taxi from the airport took her to the hospital where she lost circulation in her arms and legs. Her first amputation was her right leg above the knee. Days later her left arm was removed below the elbow and then right after that her left leg below the knee was amputated. Jane came to Gaylord for her rehabilitation. She said, "They wouldn't even let me get depressed. I called it the Gaylord effect." Jane now walks with two lower leg prosthetics.

 

Brain Injury

Arthur came to Traurig House after suffering a motorcycle accident when he suffered a traumatic brain injury and neuological damage to the left side of his body. After spending several weeks in Gaylord Hospital, Arthur was able to transition to Traurig House to receive therapy that would help him become more independent and help him to return home. Residents work to improve their mobility and skills. "They taught me how to address my own needs, such as cooking or shopping with walker. Arthur says that Gaylord and Traurig House gave him back his confidence.

 

Complex Medical Care

Bob Peter's arrived at Gaylord after spending several months in the ICU. A bout with sepsis resulted in the amputation of his right hand, several fingers on his left hand, and the toes on both feet. An avid cyclist and former marathoner Bob talks about some of his care as a medically complex patient at Gaylord.

Neurological Rehabilitation

Sonia flew from the U.S to visit her family in Ghana. Not long after arriving, she had trouble walking and things spiraled quickly downhill. She was taken to a military hospital where paralysis eventually shut down her breathing and her jaw had to be forced open in order to intubate her. Sonia was diagnosed with acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM), which is characterized by a brief but widespread attack of inflammation in the brain and spinal cord that damages myelin – the protective covering of nerve fibers. After being flown back to the U.S. she later came to Gaylord for vent weaning and rehabilitation.

 

Spinal Cord Injury

Jillian was on vacation in Mexico when her accident occurred, leaving her with a T4 spinal cord injury and no feeling from the waist down. When Jillian came to Gaylord she worked with her team to create her goals. Eventually, using the Ekso exoskeleton at Gaylord, she was able to walk. 

Shawn is a 17-year-old high school student who had never been to a trampoline park before. He videoed his brother doing a black flip and about 10 minutes later decided to give it a try. But Shawn landed on his head injuring his C-4, C-5, and C-6 vertebrae and instantly knew he had broken his neck. He couldn't move anything. After surgery to stabilize his neck he came to Gaylord for rehab. After weeks of intensive physical and occupational therapy, Shawn walked out of Gaylord!

Edwin had pulled off doing a backflip many times before. But while at a park with friends, he landed on his head resulting in a spinal cord injury. About a week after his spinal cord surgery, Edwin came to Gaylord Specialty Healthcare for his recovery and rehab. He couldn't move anything from the neck down. Edwin shares his amazing story of recovery that was a partnership with his care team coupled with his determined attitude and strong support of family and friends. Edwin walked out of Gaylord to return home.

Tyler tells his story of recovery at Gaylord and learning to walk again after a falling 25 feet from a tree. Tyler suffered a burst fracture to his T12 vertebra when his back landed on a rock. He and was told might he had a 50-50 chance of walking again and if he was able to walk it might not be for one to two years. Instead, just three months after his accident he took unassisted steps. Tyler walked out of Gaylord Specialty Healthcare, to return to his home and young family, using only a walker.

Mike's spinal stroke is rare and it's even rarer in someone in their 20s. With only a little movement in the toes and ankle of one foot, Mike didn't know if he would ever walk again. He has made tremendous progress through his rehab as an inpatient at Gaylord.

John Hopkins was diagnosed with a cavernous malformation in his spinal column in 2017. In the spring of 2020, he began experiencing more problems. John's surgeon in NYC performed surgery on March 10, 2020, just as COVID-19 was beginning to hit the city hard. Being hospitalized during that time was stressful and after the initial surgery, John began to have complications that necessitated a second surgery. A close friend did research and found Gaylord for the next step in John's care. After several months at Gaylord, making steady progress, John went home to continue his recovery. An avid athlete and adventure-sports enthusiast, he is determined to get back to mountain climbing.

 

Stroke Program

Chris was at home with his family when he began having a headache and felt dizzy and uncoordinated. A type 1 diabetic since the age of 5, Chris knew these were common symptoms of low blood sugar so he did a blood test. But his blood sugar was fine. Testing at a local hospital revealed that Chris had suffered a stroke in the left pontine portion (the pons) of his brain, impairing function on his right side. The pons is the lowest part of the brain stem that connects to the top of the spinal cord. Just four days after the stroke, Chris was transferred to Gaylord for rehab in the Young Stroke Program.

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