Friday, July 23, 2010
I spent Wednesday morning with him to go through his program and see exactly what he did and how he did it. When I got there, he was in the shower. I assumed that a nurse’s aide was doing the bathing. Nope, it was the occupational therapist. Not only was she doing the “dirty work,” she was also training him on how to take care of some of his hygiene needs himself. Once he was clean and dressed, we headed for the OT room where she had him doing “chair push-ups” to strengthen his arms and worked on an exercise machine that worked not only his arms, but his back muscles as well.
After OT, he had speech therapy. It’s not like he really “needs” speech therapy, but they do brain stimulation exercises designed to help his cognitive skills. They want to assess his short-term memory (which has the most problems) since he has some difficulty with remembering to take medications if I’m not there, and sometimes taking the wrong ones if I am there. He did very well.
Following the speech therapy, he went to physical therapy for an hour. She really put him through the paces! Rolling, leg lifts, knee strengthening, “butt tucks”, and a few other things. Then she had him “walk” in the parallel bars. Twice. He did great. Then he went back to his room to rest before lunch and we saw the amputee psychologist. It was nice to be there to listen to him talk to Ron. He left some literature for Ron to look at and said he’d be back to check on him and if Ron needed anything, the staff could get in touch with him.
Last night, we took him “outside” food. His older sister is here from Tennessee so we got him a Calzone from Old Chicago – which he loves. I was afraid his sugar test 2 hours later would show high glucose level but he only had a 100 blood sugar – and that was with only 19 units of insulin. They’ve drastically reduced his insulin intake. From 60 units with meals, he’s down to 19 units. From 80-100 units of Lantus twice a day, he’s down to 30-40. Wonderful! He also looks and sounds much healthier. I told him that I really thought there was so much infection in the leg that it was just affecting all of his other systems as well. His sister thought he looked 10 years younger.
In fact, the pilot who crashed his plane near Lake Afton on July 9th is a patient there and he was stunned to find out Ron was 62. He said he thought he was his age, which is 48.