Melissa P.

Melissa P.

The surgery was supposed to relieve the pressure in Melissa Perez's spine. Instead, it had a negative impact on her, both physically and emotionally.

Melissa Perez underwent a lumbar laminectomy and fusion to address her pain. The procedure, sometimes known as decompression surgery, relieves pressure on the spinal cord and nerves.

But Melissa's surgery didn't go as planned. The surgical site became infected and doctors had to reverse the procedure. Melissa required drainage of a left intramuscular abscess and infectious diskitis. Fluid overload and acute renal failure complicated her hospital stay. This resulted in Melissa requiring hemodialysis.

Due to these complications, Melissa needed intensive rehabilitation before returning home. She chose Highlands Rehabilitation Hospital for her recovery.

When she arrived at Highlands, Melissa describes herself as being "tired and sad." She could not walk or move from the waist down, nor perform any activities of daily living. Melissa lives with her two children, son-in-law, and three grandchildren. For a safe return home, she needed to improve her mobility.

So with the help of the staff at Highlands, Melissa got to work.

Less than three weeks later, Melissa's gains were impressive. She could walk with the use of a walker, and get in-and-out of bed herself.

"Both therapy and nursing are excellent," Melissa said about her experience at Highlands. Having made great progress, she looks forward to returning home, walking independently, and being with her family once more.