Ray Parsons is back home and doing well after a bout of pneumonia with pleural effusion left him in need of almost total assistance.
Ray came to Life Care Center of Morristown, Tennessee, on Jan. 21, 2021, for rehabilitation. Between the weakness brought on by his recent medical condition and his history of stroke, Ray was bedbound and needed total assistance for bathing and dressing. He was on a feeding tube because he couldn’t swallow, and ne needed some assistance with basic grooming tasks.
Therapists put together a plan for Ray’s treatment involving all three therapy disciplines: physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy. PT addressed his inability to get in and out of bed or walk and helped strengthen his weak right side. OT focused on helping him to increase his independence with activities of daily living, as well as increasing strength and range of motion in his arms and hands.
ST educated Ray on safe swallow strategies and began introducing a pureed diet with nectar-thick liquids. After several weeks of therapy, he was able to come off the feeding tube and safely swallow regular liquids and foods at a mechanical-soft texture. A swallow study showed him to no longer be at risk of choking.
“The nurses and therapists have all been great,” Ray said. “Housekeeping has also been great. Everyone here is doing a great job.”
Ray returned home to his wife on April 2. He is now independent in his grooming tasks and at a supervision level for sitting balance. He needs minimal assistance for bed mobility, transfers from one surface to another (such as from the bed to a chair), standing balance, bathing and walking. He also needs moderate instead of total assistance for dressing. He will continue to receive PT and OT at home.
“Congratulations to Ray for working so hard and being so successful with his recovery,” said David Gagnon, director of rehab services.