• Fern: Recovery Against the Odds

    Fern is a retired mother and wife who lived at home with her husband. Before coming to Kindred Hospital Indianapolis on May 21, 2012, Fern’s journey had included 14 months of illness and rehospitalizations.

    Prior to her admission to Kindred, Fern’s medical history included gastroparesis, a condition where the muscles in your stomach no longer function normally and food is not pushed through as it normally should be. From this she developed small bowel obstructions requiring surgery at the short-term acute care hospital. Post surgery, Fern transferred to Kindred Hospital for continued care including ventilator weaning.

    Upon admission to Kindred Hospital Fern was evaluated by our interdisciplinary team of physicians, nurses, specialists and therapists. She was on a mechanical ventilator due to recurrent aspiration pneumonia and regurgitation of liquids. Respiratory therapy assessed her condition and began the weaning process.

    Fern was depressed about previous failures to wean from the ventilator, so our social worker made sure that she had the emotional support that she needed, including a call to her husband. Once the Kindred team was able to begin successfully weaning her from her vent, Fern’s mood improved dramatically.

    Fern required wound care for a pressure ulcer on her heel and her surgical incision. She also was eventually transitioned from TPN (total parenteral nutrition) to tube feedings.

    By June 4, 2012 Fern was able to be weaned completely from the ventilator, and on June 15 Fern discharged to the same skilled nursing facility where her husband is also a resident.
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