Life Care Centers of America
Heidi Pino, Life Care Public Relations

After a hospital stay for her lymphoma and tumors in her lungs, Joan Teno was very weak and not ready to go home.

Joan chose to come to Life Care Center of Leominster, Massachusetts, for her rehabilitation. When she arrived on Sept. 8, 2021, she needed total assistance for walking and standing, as well as extensive assistance for grooming and transfers from one surface to another (such as from her bed to a wheelchair). She also needed moderate assistance with bathing and dressing and some help with bed mobility, sitting balance and self-feeding. She had some difficulties swallowing as well and was on a puree diet with nectar-thick liquids.

Physical, occupational and speech therapists worked with Joan to help her reach her goals of regaining her independence and getting back home.

Physical therapy did upper-body and lower-body strengthening exercises with Joan, as well as gait training. As she got stronger and regained balance, they went from walking on level surfaces to tackling outdoor walking and stairs.

Occupational therapy addressed Joan’s activities of daily living. Therapists taught her how to use adaptive equipment to accomplish her tasks more easily.

In speech therapy, Joan worked on her swallowing skills using oropharyngeal strengthening exercises and compensatory strategies.

“Joan has done above and beyond what’s asked of her,” said Samantha Hutt, physical therapist assistant. “She’s always pushing herself to get better.”

“The PT and OT departments are outstanding,” said Joan. “They will push you as hard as you are willing to work to maximize your physical improvement to get you home safely. I’m glad Life Care Center of Leominster was the first rehab center I’ve experienced. It has set high standards.”

Joan went home on Oct. 12, walking with a rolling walker and independent in her mobility and activities of daily living.

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