Life Care rehab helps Cohutta patient get back home

Posted 9/17/17

Suzanne Ables’ recovery from a broken ankle has been a story of celebrating small victories, all of which have culminated in the big victory of returning home.

Ables had been suffering from a …

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Life Care rehab helps Cohutta patient get back home

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Suzanne Ables’ recovery from a broken ankle has been a story of celebrating small victories, all of which have culminated in the big victory of returning home.

Ables had been suffering from a fever at her Cohutta, Georgia, home one day in May when the disorientation caused her to fall and break her ankle. She had surgery the next day and eventually came to Life Care Center of Cleveland.

Ables had a lot of challenges before her, especially since she was not cleared to put weight on her ankle. She couldn’t walk and required a mechanical lift to get her out of bed, and she needed total assistance with basic activities like bathing, getting dressed, grooming and feeding herself.

“We started a lot in the bed,” said Camila Hilton, physical therapist assistant. “She could hardly sit up on her own.”

Physical and occupational therapists worked with Ables to help her recover, focusing on strengthening exercises for her legs, core and upper body, as well as retraining her how to take care of herself.

“When I thought I wasn’t going to make it, they always kept encouraging me,” Ables said. “I felt so discouraged until I got here, and they helped me even with the little stuff. They gave me a Bible verse, Philippians 4:13, and that Bible verse helped me get motivated more.”

Also on Ables’ team of encouragers were her husband, John, and her other family members: her daughter, five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. John faithfully visited almost every day, despite the drive.

“Every step has been so small and at the same time so great,” Ables said.

“The first day I was able to walk, all the therapists clapped and cheered for me,” she said. “It was really good because I hadn’t been able to stand for quite a while, and I had no pain.”

The next steps came even faster.

“One day, I just started walking normally,” Ables said. “Now I can stand up. I can walk about 30 feet. It was my goal to be able to go home and do what I did before.”

Ables was able to achieve that goal. She returned home on Aug. 30.

“Above all, I would like to thank the Lord Jesus Christ for all He has done for me,” Ables said.

Life Care Center of Cleveland, located at 3530 Keith St., N.W., is one of 27 skilled nursing and rehabilitation facilities in Tennessee managed by Life Care Centers of America.

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