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Physical Therapy Patients Got Care They Needed Close to Home

| Date Posted: 3/1/2013

TROY – David and Kim Creger were convinced that the Center for Outpatient Rehabilitation at FirstHealth Montgomery Memorial Hospital was the best place for their son’s physical therapy.

Alvin McIntyre Ben Creger

Physical therapist Mike Shutt worked with knee replacement patient Elvin McIntyre in the Center for Outpatient Rehabilitation at FirstHealth Montgomery Memorial Hospital, and West Montgomery High School senior Ben Creger successfully returned to the baseball diamond (and the football field) after undergoing physical therapy for two different sports-related injuries.

They even didn’t change their decision after their insurance company refused to pay for the service, saying the treatment had to come from a facility physically unconnected to a hospital. Montgomery Memorial’s Physical Therapy program is located in the hospital’s Outpatient area.

“As far as I was concerned, the best (place for his physical therapy) was right here,” David Creger says. “It’s your young’un, and you want the best.”

Montgomery Memorial’s Outpatient Rehabilitation program was especially appropriate for young Ben Creger’s needs. The nature of his injury – actually two injuries suffered in two different sports-related incidents – allowed Ben to work briefly with physical therapist Mike Shutt at the outpatient center and then continue his therapy at home.

Now a West Montgomery High School senior headed toward a pharmacy major in college, Ben is fully recovered from the dislocated shoulder and bruised rotator cuff he suffered during one baseball incident and the elbow growth plate injury that occurred while he was pitching in another game. A three-sport athlete through middle school and his first two years of high school, he has since given up basketball to concentrate on baseball and football.

The upper body strengthening and conditioning exercises that Shutt prescribed put Ben back in action within a few months. Helping his recovery was the fact that he was “an excellent patient” with “very involved parents,” Shutt says.

The Cregers were “extremely happy” with his care,” David Creger says.

Montgomery County resident Elvin McIntyre was also pleased with his physical therapy at Montgomery Memorial, even though it was more extensive than Ben Creger’s and included a “swing bed” stay in Blair Hall unit in the hospital. The now 78-year-old McIntyre had a total replacement of his left knee and progressed so well with his physical therapy that he “fudged” a bit and returned to the golf course a few weeks before he was cleared to do so.

“Every day, my knee progressed,” he says about his therapy. “Every day, I could tell a difference.”

McIntyre had been bothered by pain in his knee for a long time but never to the extent that he encountered after it “blew out” on him on the second day of a Hilton Head golfing vacation. Even then, he continued to play golf with a brace until the pain worsened.

“I knew I had to do something,” he says.

After successful replacement surgery performed by orthopaedic surgeon Kurt Wohlrab, M.D., at FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital, McIntyre returned to Troy and spent a week in the Montgomery Memorial swing bed for inpatient physical therapy. (Swing beds are hospital beds that Critical Access Hospitals can use for either acute care or inpatient rehab depending on the patient’s Medicare diagnosis.)

According to Shutt, McIntyre responded well, and quickly, to a therapy program that began with getting him up and moving and continued with work to restore his range of motion and treatment to reduce pain. Total knee patients typically need some home health assistance following their discharge from the hospital, but not the motivated McIntyre.

“He was ready to come just to outpatient therapy,” Shutt says.

A lifelong athlete and the head of an equally athletic family, McIntyre used to be known for his water skiing agility. He is now a frequent visitor to the FirstHealth Center for Health & Fitness-Troy, where his wife, Roxie, is employed. Golf is his sport of choice.

Inpatient and outpatient therapy at Montgomery Memorial helped get him back in the Fitness Center and on the golf course.

“It was a sure enough amazing experience here,” he says.

For more information on the FirstHealth Centers for Outpatient Rehabilitation, call (800) 213-3284.







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