Bobbie Jo's Story

Bobbie Jo Rogers stands with the help of a walker.

Bobbie Jo Rogers, 42, lives in Natalbany, LA with her husband, Kevin, and their two young daughters. She started falling frequently and had to rely on a cane for stability. Bobbie Jo’s strength continued to decline to the point that she needed a walker and shortly thereafter, a wheelchair. Doctors at Ochsner Main Campus determined that pieces of her spine had degenerated and were pinching her spinal cord. Surgery was performed on her vertebrae and spacers were put in place.

Bobbie Jo’s physicians recommended an inpatient rehabilitation hospital after surgery to continue her recovery. Although initially hesitant since she has young children at home, when she met a case manager with Northshore Rehabilitation Hospital, she felt that it would be the best choice.

At the time of admission, Bobbie Jo was unable to walk or complete any self-care tasks. Her goal for recovery was to be able to walk again, although she shared that she didn’t really believe that was possible.

Bobbie Jo had an immediate rapport with her therapy team and the staff at the hospital. During physical therapy, Bobbie Jo used the stepper machine and therapy bands to increase leg strength and endurance, worked on balance in the parallel bars and was guided by her therapists in an overhead support sling system to practice walking.

In occupational therapy, she worked on strengthening her arms using weights and an arm bike. Her therapy team also educated her on new ways to accomplish self-care tasks such as dressing, using a reacher and a sock aide.

Reflecting on the first time she was placed in the overhead support sling with a mirror in front of her, Bobbie Jo said, “I knew then that I was going to walk again.” When she discharged after 28 days, Bobbie Jo was able to walk 257 feet with the aid of a walker. She was also able to get out of bed unassisted and walk to the bathroom and around the room. Asked to summarize her experience at Northshore Rehabilitation Hospital, she said, “I loved it. Everyone was amazing.”

Bobbie Jo’s family also played a major role in her recovery. She shared, “I have a wonderful support system at home.” Her family brought her children to visit on weekends, giving her something to look forward to during the week. Both Bobbie Jo’s mom and sister attended family training so they can assist her at home, and her mom moved in with Bobbie Jo’s family to help with her care and the care of her children.

Bobbie Jo plans to continue with outpatient therapy and looks forward to being there for her family as a mom, wife and sister. For others on a recovery journey, she advises: “If you need therapy, Northshore Rehabilitation Hospital is absolutely the place to be.”