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Again and Again, Louis Thanks Memorial for Lifesaving Care

Louis and June, both in their early 80s, were celebrating their golden years like most retirees in Florida – traveling, shopping and dining out. Even with a history of osteoporosis and multiple bone fractures, Louis managed to stay active and mobile, using a walker or a scooter for distance.

Nearly two years ago, while the couple was enjoying a cruise, Louis suffered a near-fatal fall from his scooter. Severely injured with a fractured neck, Louis was treated by the physician aboard the ship until the cruise returned to port. After a visit to a walk-in clinic, Louis was taken to Memorial Hospital Pembroke. When his neck fracture did not heal on its own, doctors transferred Louis to Memorial Regional Hospital for surgery. The surgery was successful and he returned to Memorial Hospital Pembroke for pulmonary care.

The Fight of His Life

"Following surgery, my condition went from bad to worse rather quickly," says Louis. "I was having trouble breathing so doctors performed a tracheotomy and I was on a ventilator. I was not in very good shape."

Because he had a tracheotomy, Louis was unable to eat or speak.

"The nurses and doctors at Memorial Hospital Pembroke brought in someone to teach me sign language so that I could communicate," Louis says. "It helped me so much to be able to express myself. They really went above and beyond."

A pharmacist for more than 60 years, Louis was familiar with the hospital environment.

"The nurses were especially compassionate and cooperative, quickly cleaning up soiled sheets and staying on top of my many medications," says Louis. "They really helped me keep my dignity."

Unfortunately, fluid was building around his lungs and the medical team and family considered hospice for end-of-life care for Louis. Meanwhile, doctors continued to explore options and additional treatments proved successful.

"Even though I was dependent on a ventilator and in my 80s, my Memorial doctors never gave up on me," says Louis. "They were able to relieve the fluid and take me off the ventilator so I could breathe on my own again. They saved my life."

After three months at Memorial Hospital Pembroke, Louis was transferred to Memorial Regional Hospital's inpatient rehabilitation unit where he spent two months learning to eat, walk and talk again.

"Shortly after my discharge, I was able to attend both of my grandsons' weddings in California," says Louis. "It was a big trip after a major surgery and recovery. The Memorial team gave me my life back."

But Louis' story doesn't end here.

Another Surgery, Another Comeback

This past September, he was back at Memorial Hospital Pembroke for hip replacement surgery.

"Again, I received exceptional care," says Louis. "I never experienced any pain and only needed a Tylenol following surgery."

After two weeks of inpatient rehabilitation therapy at Memorial Regional Hospital South, Louis went home again.

"Believe it or not, I'm 84 years old and after all I've been through, I'm back to enjoying lunch at the JCC, playing bingo and shopping with my chauffeur, June," says Louis. "Memorial gave me my life back – twice."


 

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