Lanessa Resident Achieves Therapy Goals, Able to Dance Again With Wife

Lanessa Resident Achieves Therapy Goals, Able to Dance Again With Wife

WEBSTER, M.A. — Daniel Paredes and his family were told of the possibility that he might never walk again. In September of 2023, Daniel suffered from a devasting fall down a flight of stairs where he hit his head and broke his vertebra. He landed in the hospital and was in a coma for two months.

Upon waking up from the coma, he was transferred to Spaulding Hospital for intensive therapy. After a couple of months there, he was then admitted to Lanessa Extended Care for rehabilitation and recovery in Webster, Massachusetts.

Lanessa’s Director of Rehabilitation and Occupational Therapist Lisa Daniels said when she first met Paredes, he was dependent on staff for mobility and self-care. She said doctors were telling him he would be quadriplegic.

Upon evaluation at admission, Paredes was prescribed occupational and physical therapy five days a week. He was also seen by a speech therapist for a short time.

The staff began using a Hoyer lift on Parades when he arrived, which they used through January until the therapy team saw he was making small gains. In February of 2024, the team began using a bilateral platform walker with him. The goal of using this device is to improve balance and stability, said Daniels.

Little by little he was making progress and, by the end of February 2024, he was bathing and dressing with only the assist of one person by his side as he had gained strength in his upper and lower body. A huge accomplishment when nearly two months ago he was using a Hoyer lift for transfers out of bed.

Daniel Paredes (left) and COTA Louis Pecore (right)

“I give so much credit to him,” said Louis Pecore, a certified occupational therapist assistant. “I gave him homework all the time, little assignments to carry over, and if he didn’t do it, I’d know. I’m giving him the tools and whatever you put in you get out. I tell him that I go home every day, and I want you to go home too.”

Paredes calls Pecore a “magnificent person” and says that Pecore has taught him to relearn the movements of the body, rather than relying on machines to do it.

“He teaches me to stay strong, we laugh and joke, but when it’s time to be serious, he pushes me to work and helps me work on my balance,” Paredes said.

In April of 2024, Paredes hit a remarkable milestone. He had increased his upper body strength and he only needed one person next to him to assist in getting up if he needed it. He was also able to feed himself once again, which was a goal of his since he arrived in December.

Daniels, Pecore, along with Kirsten Truscott, physical therapist, and Michelle Wilga, physical therapist assistant, are incredibly proud of the recovery he has had and what more he will achieve.

Today, he can get up out of his chair by himself and walk with a walker or cane.

“He has come a long way,” said Truscott. “It is his motivation and his hard work. We are just his guides.”

“He came to rehab totally dependent,” said Daniels, “and will now meet his goals of dancing the Salsa with his wife by the Fourth of July Independence Day!”

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