Gail Prather loves spending time outdoors going for walks in her neighborhood and on different hiking trails. One weekend her whole family took a trip out to Spring Mill Park. Gail walked a few short hikes with her two grandsons, ages three and six. She arrived home Sunday and felt completely normal. But the following morning, she began experiencing pain in her leg. By Wednesday she could hardly walk.
Gail made an appointment with her orthopedic surgeon and was diagnosed with a stress fracture in her right tibia just below her knee. Her orthopedist recommended physical therapy so she could work on her balance. Gail knew she wanted to come to Southern Indiana Rehabilitation Hospital for outpatient therapy. Not only did her husband have a positive experience as a previous patient, but the facility was also close to home.
Before starting therapy at SIRH, Gail had been on crutches for 12 weeks. The pain she experienced made her feel insecure about completing everyday tasks like stepping out of the tub. Gail explained, “It was extremely painful and I felt unstable like I was going to easily lose my balance.”
Since beginning outpatient physical therapy Gail said, “The difference is night and day.” She mainly worked with her physical therapist, Susan. They focused on building her confidence back up and reaching her goals. “I plan on living a long time and want to be as active as I can be.”
Even though she continues to work on things like heal-to-toe walking, Gail has made great progress. She can now walk around her yard and confidently navigate the uneven terrain. “I am really, really glad I came to SIRH for outpatient therapy,” she said enthusiastically. Gail looks forward to being able to walk around her neighborhood and go on trails, especially with her grandchildren.