Terry and Leonard
Terry fell from a ladder and suffered a traumatic brain injury that changed his mood and personality. Leonard had a stroke that caused mood, memory and physical issues. Watch them tell their personal stories and learn how Hook Rehab provided them with individual treatments for continuing positive outcomes in their lives today.
Tim Hoffer suffered a brain injury in 2006 after falling from a golf cart and fracturing his skull. He was transferred from his Fort Wayne home to Hook Rehab in Indianapolis to undergo both inpatient and outpatient therapies. During this process, Tim also lived in the semi-independent living home since his family resided in Fort Wayne and his therapy was taking place in Indianapolis. “I was dealt a traumatic adversity in life. The professionals at Hook cared for me and worked with me to achieve my goals and ambitions. I thank them for giving me my life back,” said Hoffer.
"When I woke up in Hook Rehab I had no idea how I'd gotten there. Thankfully, the doctors, nurses and staff had a plan to get me back where I belong."
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Brynn M. is a former patient who worked her way through the brain injury continuum at Hook Rehabilitation Center. On April 14, 2004, the 19-year-old collegiate cheerleader and biochemistry major was driving through Illinois on her way back to Missouri Valley College when she hit an overpass embankment and plunged 50 feet to the ditch below. Brynn was in a coma for 44 days, spending the latter part of that time at Community Hospital East after being transferred from a St. Louis hospital.
She doesn't remember driving or the entire week before her accident, but she's made incredible strides, thanks to a lot of hard work and rigorous therapy. In the brain injury rehabilitation unit, Brynn and other patients work with brain injury teams that consist of a physiatrist, rehabilitation nursing staff, clinical neuropsychologist, a physical therapist, an occupational therapist, a speech language pathologist, a recreational therapist and a social worker. Mary Osting, a brain injury liaison and speech therapist, worked with Brynn while she was a patient on the sub-acute unit. "It's life-altering for patients and their families," Osting says of traumatic brain injury (TBI).
Brynn's regime included speech therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy and recreational therapy. "I had a wheelchair and had to learn how to walk with a walker," Brynn says.
She couldn't walk independently again until she started the brain injury day treatment program. Each weekday from 8:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. she participated in more individualized therapy, group therapy and activities to facilitate community re-entry. David Klein, clinical neuropsychologist and clinical coordinator of the brain injury continuum for Hook Rehab Outpatient Services, worked with her. "When you first started here, you weren't able to participate at a high level, so we would spend hours playing cards with you," says Klein to Brynn.
Card playing helped develop rapport and basic thinking skills such as orientation, paying attention for a period of time, and basic reasoning that allowed more intensive therapy later.
Eventually, Brynn thrived and even did a cartwheel in physical therapy. "That, I was really proud of myself for," she says. "I did it the same way. It was just a lot slower because I closed my eyes and prayed for mercy."
Suffering a TBI wasn't without consequence. Brynn had to deal with losing a boyfriend, a changing voice and a decline in her math skills among other things. "I'm not like my old self. My mom says there's old Brynn and new Brynn," she explains. "Before I could cheer and I was super smart. I'm not dumb now, but now it seems like everything is hard."
"It doesn't change how smart you are, but maybe it changes how you organize yourself," Klein adds, addressing Brynn. "You're someone who worked really hard and got a lot of your life back."
Klein explains how extensive therapy at Hook Outpatient Services helps Brynn and other patients. "What differentiates the Hook brain injury rehabilitation continuum and facilitates Brynn and other patients with brain injury in their recovery is our individualized goal setting, holistic rehabilitation planning, neuropsychological orientation, therapeutic milieu, outcome oriented rehabilitation planning, high intensity rehabilitation program, and staff dedicated and trained specifically in brain injury rehabilitation."
By sharing her story, Brynn hopes to increase awareness of TBI and Hook's brain injury continuum. "I didn't know anything about brain injury until I woke up and found out I had it," she says. "And I really didn't understand it. I still don't understand it very well. I just want people to know that people with brain injuries aren't dumb. They are the same as you. Brain injuries don't go away like colds, but people wouldn't know I had a brain injury unless I told them."