Noyes Patient Testimonial
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Steve Meyer was mowing his lawn at his home in Hermitage on July 4th 2012 when the riding mower slid into a stream. “I heard something that sounded like branches getting chopped by the mower. I didn’t realize it was actually the lower part of my leg. I pulled myself out of the stream and up onto the bank. I didn’t feel any pain, but I knew it was bad,” Steve said. Over the next sixteen days, surgeons at Strong Memorial Hospital tried desperately to control the infection that was spreading in the remnant of Steve’s right lower leg. “The muscle tissue was dying; the infection kept spreading up my leg,” said Steve. Steve’s final surgery, an above-the-knee amputation, was successful in that it stopped the spread of infection; however, Steve was left to face a long recovery that included learning how to walk with a prosthetic leg.
Steve was discharged from the hospital on August 2nd, and his wife Barbara began the search for a Physical Therapist who could offer gait training with balance bars for above-knee amputees. After calling several outpatient rehab facilities in the area, Steve and Barbara discovered that Noyes Rehabilitation Services in Geneseo offered the type of rehabilitative physical therapy that was most suited to Steve’s injury.
In January 2013, Steve began working with Paul Kreher, Physical Therapist and Supervisor of the Noyes Rehab Clinic in Geneseo. “When Steve first came to see me, he was highly motivated to get up and start walking. We discussed his expectations and the amount of hard work and dedication required to meet those expectations,” said Paul. “Steve’s positive attitude and his motivation to excel were at the heart of his successful recovery.”
“I wanted someone with knowledge to do the right things to get me walking again,” Steve said.
“Paul is a very caring therapist, and very knowledgeable. Paul knew that I wanted to get back on the road to recovery. I had too many things to look forward to; I wanted to get back to work and my Scouting activities, and most importantly, I wanted to drive a car again.”
Paul’s initial focus was to develop strength and flexibility in Steve’s hip, along with strong core muscles, both of which would serve as Steve’s foundation for walking. Once that foundation was in place, Steve was able to practice standing and weight shifting on the stabilizer bars. Through his hard work, Steve was able to quickly progress from the parallel bars to a wheeled walker, and finally, to crutches. “Successful gait training for patients with this type of injury is partially due to the insight of the therapist in knowing how hard to challenge the patient and how to safely manage the risks involved,” said Paul. “Steve and I spent a lot of time systematically advancing his program, with frequent input from his prosthetist to discuss adjustments along the way which which would optimize Steve’s gait.”
Steve’s efforts, guided by Paul’s expert clinical knowledge, have paid off. Steve completed his rehabilitation therapy and now walks easily with the aid of a cane. Steve is looking forward to returning to his job at the Department of Environmental Conservation in Avon, where he has worked for twenty-four years. “I’ve driven by Noyes Health in Geneseo every day on my way to work, and never knew that Physical Therapy was there until I needed it. My experience at Noyes has been great! What Paul Kreher did for me is great! I’m walking now, and wow, it’s a good feeling!”