Patient Stories - Ron
Sutter Roseville Medical Center
On the Mend with Neurological Therapy
"I guess I missed a spot," says Ron jokingly about the insect repellent he regularly applies. "I was diagnosed with a severe case of West Nile Virus that was caused by a mosquito bite. After spending three and a half months in the hospital – which included one month in the ICU on a respirator – I could not walk, use my right arm, see very well, nor even feed myself. But I knew at that point – since it already happened – I had to accept my fate and focus on getting better."
That was more than 16 months ago. Today, when asked how he is doing, Ron replies, "Super!" He credits his recovery to his wife Joyce, his own resourcefulness, and the specialists with Outpatient Rehabilitation Services at Sutter Roseville Medical Center.
"The hospital in which I stayed after my diagnosis did a fine job. After I was discharged, they helped me get moving again – although my progress was very slow," Ron explains. "I searched for more resources online and learned about neurological therapy. My current specialists didn’t offer that, so I asked for a referral to Sutter Roseville after I figured out their neurological rehabilitation services could help me."
"His improvement was apparent after his first couple of visits to Sutter Roseville’s rehab clinic," says Joyce, Ron’s wife. "I was thrilled and also relieved, since I have been Ron’s care provider at home. His illness had taken such a toll on both of us." Because of Ron’s immobility, Joyce had injured her back and hip while helping him get around. "So, I also became a patient at Sutter Roseville," she says. "I had pelvic surgery and spent a week there. While that was a difficult time, I couldn’t help but notice the attentive level of care they provide. My doctor was wonderful, my nurses were angels. I knew that Ron and I were in good hands."
Luckily, since they spend much time there, Ron and Joyce live only a few miles from Sutter Roseville. "My mobility improved significantly with frequent visits to the rehab clinic," says Ron. "The West Nile Virus caused motor neuron damage, but thankfully those nerves can regenerate. The ongoing neurological therapy offered at Sutter helps that regeneration process. They have all sorts of neat tricks for their rehab patients. For example, I’ve had success with something called mirror therapy. In addition, I like all the exercise I get in their pool! They give me lots to do both at the clinic and at home. The best part of it is that I am 16 months out, working hard and still getting better because of Sutter Roseville's rehab team."
"I could give you plenty of stories of how Bonnie, Sheliah, Bobbie, Amanda, Bev, Julie and others at Sutter’s rehab clinic helped me improve my mobility. Their team approach forces me to my limits so I heal faster," he says. "Specialists from my previous facility would let me revel in my success but then I’d plateau and my progress would halt. At Sutter Roseville, they keep my progress constantly moving towards our goals!"
Ron and Joyce, both retired, used to ride bicycles before Ron’s diagnosis. "That was one of the harder things," says Ron, "I missed riding. However, when I started to get better, Joyce bought me a spiffy tricycle! The 'trike' gives me stability so I can independently ride around again." It is triumphs like that which rejuvenate Ron’s positive attitude.
Ron and Joyce have three children, eight grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. "Most of our time and energy is spent on Ron’s rehab," says Joyce. "But, soon, I think we’ll be able to spend more time with our family – maybe even ride bicycles with them – as Ron continues to heal with Sutter Roseville’s rehab services."