David's Story 

David Jones sits outside during therapy.

It was a quiet evening at home for David Jones and his wife, Julie. Even though he had dropped a couple of items, he did not think much of it. However, the following day, he alarmingly lost control of the left side of his body. At that point, Julie called an ambulance, and he was rushed to the emergency room.

David was diagnosed with a stroke. He was quickly administered medication, then he was transferred to Tulane Medical Center in New Orleans where he underwent surgery to place a stent in his artery.
Once he was medically stable, his physicians recommended an intensive inpatient rehabilitation program to help him regain mobility and independence. David and Julie chose Northshore Rehabilitation Hospital for his recovery.

Upon arrival at Northshore, the physician-led rehabilitation team worked with David to put a treatment plan in place. David faced the daunting reality of having no mobility on his left side. However, a prior experience with adversity—he had relearned to walk following a previous leg injury—fueled his confidence.

“I had no doubt I could do it again,” David affirmed, reflecting on his resolve.

Physical therapy at Northshore was intensive and focused on regaining left-side strength through stretches and resistance exercises with therabands. Progressing from standing in parallel bars to walking with assistance, David made significant strides. By his discharge, he was walking independently for up to 900 feet—a significant achievement.

Occupational therapy introduced additional therapies as David worked to restore function in his left arm. His occupational therapists ensured that his sessions included electrical stimulation, or e-stim, which sends mild electrical pulses through the skin to help stimulate injured muscles or manipulate nerves. By causing repeated muscle contractions, blood flow improves, helping repair and strengthen injured muscles through repeated cycles of contraction and relaxation. Over time, e-stim can “train” muscles to respond to the body’s natural signals to contract, which is especially helpful for those recovering from a stroke.

Therabands and range-of-motion exercises also helped him regain movement, but David also learned new ways to manage his self-care, mastering tasks such as showering and dressing with adaptive tools.

David credits Julie’s support and visits from his son and grandchild as critical to his recovery. His experience at Northshore, including the positivity and encouragement of the staff, was nothing short of "awesome."

“I just knew that I was not going to give up,” David stated when asked about a turning point in his recovery.

After 20 day of inpatient rehabilitation, David was ready to return home with Julie and anticipated resuming his walks and tending to his 5-acre property in Bogalusa. He planned to continue building his strength though outpatient rehabilitation.