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  1. #1

    Exclamation New here; need some opinions, please

    Hi everyone.

    My BIL was in an MVA on January 23rd and now has an SCI at C5. He had surgery on 1/24 to repair the damage; I believe they removed C5 and fused C4 and C6. He has bicep movement, but no tricep movement, and today I was told he has regained some feeling in one thumb and one palm. He is out of ICU as of today. I appologize for sounding so clinical, but I can't even wrap my head around this yet. This is a huge blow to our family, and we are all still reeling. I haven't been able to see him yet as he is in a hospital 3 hours away where the accident happened. I will be going there on Monday. I want to help my sister in any way I can, so I've been on a quest for information. This messageboard/website has been a wealth of information for me, and I thank you all for that.

    Currently my BIL is in a hospital in Green Bay, WI, where they have a rehabilitation program, but I don't know the accredidation or anything. The decision has to be made by Monday where he will do rehabilitation. Ultimately it is my sister and BIL's decision, but I'm trying to help them make an informed decision. My question is this: if you had a choice, where would you go for rehab, where you would send a loved one, etc-- Shepherd, Craig, or Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago? Why? I've been researching all 3 and I must say I'm impressed by what I've seen of each. RIC is only about 2 hours from where we live (BIL was injured while out of town for work), so that is a definite plus for that. We have an extremely large and close-knit family, and we all want to be involved in his recovery.

    What would you do if it were you? Thanks in advance!
    Jen

  2. #2
    I visited that rehab center in Green Bay a number of years ago and unless they have changed a lot, at that time they were not a state-of-the-art facility, and they definitely do NOT specialize in SCI.

    I would recommend trying to get him to Northwestern/RIC ASAP. While Craig and Shephard are both excellent centers, RIC has a very good reputation, fine physicians, and good nursing and therapy staff on a specialty SCI unit, and they are close enough for family and friends to visit more easily than Atlanta or Denver. I spent considerable time at RIC when I was in graduate school and would not hesitate to take a family member of mine there.

    Please come back and ask questions, get other family members on line too, and get your bro-in-law here ASAP. The fact that he has gotten some return this soon is great...we will all pray that he continues to get some more.

    (KLD)

  3. #3
    Thank you so much for your quick reply. I sent my sister the link for the forums and told her I had posted. I'm going to call her in the morning and urge her to come here. It has helped me understand so much more than I did. I'm also going to email her your reply; hopefully it will help her.

    I think they are getting a referral together on Monday, which is why she has to decide, and hope to transfer him by Wednesday.

    Thanks again,
    Jen

  4. #4
    If he is not yet strong enough for the rehab program at RIC, ask to have him transfered to the acute SCI unit at Northwestern Hospital in Chicago. It is right across the street from RIC and they work closely with the RIC program. They know SCI, and can help with his transition to the program at RIC.

    (KLD)

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    minnesota
    Posts
    2,086
    keep us up to date with his progress or better yet have him join "the circus" aka. Care Cure. Wishing your family the best of luck!

  6. #6

    Super exciting news!

    At least I think it is, and I know you guys will understand.

    My BIL is now at Craig as of yesterday afternoon. But that's not the super exciting part. He felt a towel brush across his stomach today, and he also felt when they put in his suppository!! (he'd kill me if he knew I were posting this). I guess it's the small miracles I'm looking for because there is so much unknown.

    He's also getting more wrist movement and still has some small (very small) hand/thumb movement.

    I just had to share!

    Jen

  7. #7
    I find that thumb/hand movement to be very exciting. Thanks for your enthusiasm. Good job getting him to Craig, getting that rehab ball moving!

  8. #8
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    24
    I am thinking of your BIL and family. I hope he continues to have much progress. Stephanie

  9. #9

    Update

    Well, it's been 3 weeks since my BIL's MVA. He is still at Craig Hospital, where he will remain until probably the beginning of May.

    There was a conference call today with all of his doctors and therapy team that the family was able to call in on. I wasn't able to, but my mom was there. We got some disappointing (at least I think it is) news. His injury is Asia A complete. I thought for sure with some of the return that he has had that he would at least be an incomplete. I know that his prognosis is still unsure, as are all SCI's, but I think this probably makes what will happen a little more likely, if you know what I mean. I'm sure it was a rough day for my BIL as well because I think this is the first time everything has been laid out for him.

    He's also been having issues with his Iron levels, and has had to be on an IV daily for the last week and a half. Now he'll have to have a weekly shot and daily pill.

    Today made me so sad. I think I've been living somewhat of a fantasy that he WILL walk again; it's always been in the back of my mind that he possibly will not; now it's more of a probability that he won't. Ahh well, there's always hope, isn't there?

    Jen

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Somewhere in the Rocky Mountains
    Posts
    8,148
    Quote Originally Posted by fairygirl78
    Well, it's been 3 weeks since my BIL's MVA. He is still at Craig Hospital, where he will remain until probably the beginning of May.

    There was a conference call today with all of his doctors and therapy team that the family was able to call in on. I wasn't able to, but my mom was there. We got some disappointing (at least I think it is) news. His injury is Asia A complete. I thought for sure with some of the return that he has had that he would at least be an incomplete. I know that his prognosis is still unsure, as are all SCI's, but I think this probably makes what will happen a little more likely, if you know what I mean. I'm sure it was a rough day for my BIL as well because I think this is the first time everything has been laid out for him.

    He's also been having issues with his Iron levels, and has had to be on an IV daily for the last week and a half. Now he'll have to have a weekly shot and daily pill.

    Today made me so sad. I think I've been living somewhat of a fantasy that he WILL walk again; it's always been in the back of my mind that he possibly will not; now it's more of a probability that he won't. Ahh well, there's always hope, isn't there?

    Jen
    So sorry your BIL had to join our SCI club. The doctors can classify him as a cat/dog/rat but they dont always know. Life with SCI is rough but he is in the best rehab there is. Dont lose hope and keep encouraging him...will keep him/your family in my thoughts/prayers.
    T12-L2; Burst fracture L1: Incomplete walking with AFO's and cane since 1989

    My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am. ~Author Unknown

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