“Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.” –Confucius
The biggest obstacles in life are usually the ones we never see coming. At PT Northwest, we are no strangers to the power that our patients show daily to improve their quality of life. In today’s success story, we look at how the simplest actions can change a life and why sheer determination can act as the biggest catalyst in overcoming even the sharpest odds.
It was just a regular day in October for Valerie Bidgood. Then one small act changed her life forever. When reaching to catch a falling cup before it could break on the table, the glass sliced through her right flexor tendon and lacerated a nerve. The trauma affected the movement in her right ring finger and caused numbness in several other fingers as well. After surgery, she began occupational therapy to repair the tendons that were damaged in the accident. Valerie met with Andrea Britten, OTR/L, MOT, Certified Hand Therapist, at the PT Northwest clinic in Stayton. Due to the severity of the injury, Andrea had to make a custom splint during the first appointment, which Valerie had to wear for 8 weeks following her surgery. As her progress continued and the splint had to be updated, Andrea ensured that she was available to help with the new design.
After 5 months of hard work, Valerie had made improvements but her range of motion and strength had still not resumed. She returned to surgery in order to repair the nerve damage and remove the scar tissue that had attached to her tendons. The surgery was successful and allowed Valerie to return to occupational therapy without relying on a splint. Due to this, she and Andrea were able to start working on maintaining Valerie’s range of motion and improving her strength immediately. The work was hard and the days were long, however, Valerie’s tenacity, as well as Andrea’s encouragement and experience, allowed her to fight through the pain to make new steps in her recovery. When she was not in the clinic, Valerie was completing her home exercise program nearly every hour with her husband, Kyle Bidgood, DPT, who works at our West Salem location. Amidst it all, Valerie’s incredible drive and commitment to work through the pain were the building blocks of her recovery. Together with her surgeon and her occupational therapist, she is now able to get back to the hobbies she enjoyed before the accident including writing, biking, and baking.
Therapy is an active recovery process and Valerie’s improvement was a reflection on her ability to keep going, despite the obstacles. At PT Northwest, it is our mission to ensure that all of our patients have the support needed to improve their health. To hear more about our patient’s incredible journeys, check our monthly blog and contact our team to find out how we can help you.