Patient Success Stories
For the past sixteen years, I have been a patient in the St. Elizabeth Pulmonary Rehab program. Obviously, I feel that the program has been beneficial since I have attended for so many years. The staff is cheerful, as well as extremely knowledgeable, and my fellow patients seem like family since we have been together for a very long time. Based on the above reasons, I view Pulmonary Rehab not as a regimen that maintains my health, but as a pleasant experience that I enjoy.
~Becky B., Pulmonary Rehab patient
In 2012 I was diagnosed with Ideopathic Pulmonary Fribrosis ("IPF") for which there is no known cure. My pulmonologists from University of Cincinnati challenged me to get involved with pulmonary rehab so I chose St. Elizabeth-Edgewood because it was close to where we live. I went for a while and dropped out because all of the people seemed old and needed oxygen and I was still active and didn't think I needed it. Six months later, I re-registered and realized that my lung capacity had dropped tremendously. As the IPF got worse, so did my stamina and ability to exercise as before. I was referred to Cleveland Clinic as a potential lung transplant candidate and they told me that I had to stay strong and to continue with rehab. My condition continued to deteriorate to the point that I had lost 40 pounds and had to use 10L of oxygen to walk on the treadmill at a very slow speed.
Betsy, Joe, and Connie in rehab were always very supportive and encouraging. On Feb 10, 2014, I received "the call" that a donor's lungs looked like a match and I was airlifted to Cleveland Clinic for the surgery. We stayed in Cleveland for almost two months after surgery but in less than a week after transplant I was on the treadmill walking a mile without oxygen!!! Upon being released by the surgical staff at the Cleveland Clinic, they prescribed pulmonary rehab. I returned to St. Elizabeth to be welcomed with open arms and soon after began to resume an exercise routine to build up my stamina and strength. It was nice to come back to the same team of people in Pulmonary Rehab. I have been there for the last year and a half, actually enjoying the exercise, the team, and the other patients. We have developed quite a friendship!
I feel like my mission now is to help encourage others who are going through various stages of lung disease, by giving them hope as they saw me pre-transplant and post-transplant.
What a blessing it has been to have received a new lease on life. I am thankful each day for the blessing I have received as a result of an unselfish donor (and their family)!! Modern medicine is miraculous and many prayers were answered for me to be able to recommend St. E's Pulmonary Rehab department for those who need the exercise to stay strong and the motivation of peers and the leadership in the department.
Maybe someday St. Elizabeth will do lung transplantations, but for now, they offer everything necessary to prepare for each individual regardless of where they are in their journey.
~Ross P., Pulmonary Rehab patient at St. Elizabeth
Single Lung Transplant Cleveland Clinic 2/10/14
I have COPD and have been attending the St. Elizabeth Pulmonary Rehab program in an effort to improve my physical condition and manage my activities of daily living to maintain my quality of life. Between the instructed exercise program and encouragement from Betsy, my Respiratory Therapist, I have increased my muscle strength, endurance, and emotional well-being. The rehab department has ample exercise equipment to benefit the needs and abilities of the patients who attend the sessions. I find group exercise lifts my spirits especially on the days I am not at my best. Thank you St. Elizabeth Rehab Center for helping me come this far.
~Sandy N., Pulmonary Rehab patient