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Diane — Occupational Therapy Patient Story​​

When Diane was preparing for her New Year’s activities, the last thing she was thinking about was occupational therapy. But when walking up the stairs to her house, she slipped and fell, landing awkwardly on her left arm.

After a visit to the emergency department at UPMC Presbyterian, it was determined that the injury was much worse than it looked and she would need to have surgery to repair her broken left wrist. To make matters worse, Diane is left-handed and was about to return to work after the holiday vacation.


Diane’s surgery at UPMC Presbyterian was scheduled shortly after the injury. Having not been in the hospital or injured for quite a long time, she was concerned about her hand and what would happen next. The surgery went well and her wrist was repaired by plastic surgeons at UPMC Presbyterian. However the surgery left Diane with a 5” metal plate and four screws in her wrist. She would need occupational therapy after the surgery to get her hand back to where it was before the accident.

Not knowing much about occupational therapy, Diane was a bit apprehensive about the process and what would be in store for her. Upon first walking into her UPMC Centers for Rehab Services (CRS) location, Diane said that her therapist Kim confessed that she thought Diane would be her problem child. "But she ended up being the model patient,” recalled Kim.

Diane tackled her therapy head on, rigorously adhering to the individualized plan her therapists created that was geared toward her specific needs and goals. She was in therapy for three months but is now back to work.

“I just can’t say enough about Kim Maguire, Marie Pace, Scott, Valerie, the interns, everyone. They were just phenomenal,” said Diane.

When asked what she would tell other people in a similar situation, Diane said “I had to do therapy at home, three times a day in between my sessions at CRS. But you know what? Suck it up. You just have to do it. It’s the only way you’re going to get better."

 

Read more about the occupational therapy program at UPMC Centers for Rehab Services.