When we are sick, we’re all the same. We want to know what is wrong with us and what needs to happen to make us well again. This is exactly what occurred to Wade T. earlier this year. But unfortunately for Wade, for the first several months of his illness, his exact condition went unidentified. This resulted in the delay of the correct treatment regiment being administered.
Wade’s symptoms started shortly after the passing of his mother. He had gone to make funeral arrangements and noticed a heaviness in his legs. Wade assumed it was related to the stress of the situation, or perhaps a bug that he might have caught. He tried not to pay it much attention and assumed it would pass. As the weeks went on, his legs became heavier and it had become difficult for him to move or walk.
After experiencing two falls at work, it was time to go to the local emergency room to address his declining condition. Initially, Wade's doctors could not determine the cause of the symptoms. They discharged him home. Within several days Wade had declined further and he called for an ambulance to transport him back to the local ER. This time he was admitted, and within a couple of days, Wade was diagnosed with Guillain-Barre Syndrome. A regiment of IVIG and plasmapheresis was administered. Within days he was sent to SKY Rehab to begin his first round of rehabilitation.
Wade completed his rehab stay and discharged home. But his health began to decline again. In just two weeks, Wade declined to the point that he could not feed himself, get out of bed or do much of anything independently. He sought a second opinion on his condition. This time he went to the Vanderbilt emergency room. Wade was admitted and by the end of the next day he was diagnosed with Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy (CIDP). He was given the correct treatment regiment of IVIG. Within six days he was ready to be transferred to SKY for more rehabilitation.
Two weeks in, Wade began to experience improvements. He attributes these improvements to the power of prayer and the SKY employees helping him on his journey. Wade explained, “Everyone treated me very well the whole time and they seemed eager to help me. Anything they gave me to do or wanted me to do, it wasn’t because they were trying to be mean or hard on me. It was because they wanted me to succeed.”
After discharge, Wade continued his rehabilitation through SKY’s outpatient department. He surprised even himself when he was able to walk 134 feet with the assistance of a rolling walker shortly after beginning his outpatient therapy. He recalled, “I told them I didn’t think I could do it. But they wanted me to try anyway, so I got up and took one step at a time. I amazed myself!”
When asked what he would tell another patient preparing to admit to SKY for rehabilitation, Wade responded, “it’s going to be rough. It’s going to be harder than you think. The therapists are going to have to push you, but do all you can, plus give a little bit more, and it will make a difference!”