In a split second, a serious accident can change one’s life forever.
In mid-December 2016, a patient, who wishes to remain anonymous, showed up at the Tuality Forest Grove Emergency Department with a grave injury to his right hand. His wound was triaged, and he was sent to Tuality Community Hospital in Hillsboro for day surgery where he met his surgeon, Dr. Jakub Langer. Although the patient couldn’t shake Dr. Langer’s hand because of his injury, he put his trust in him. When he awoke after nearly five hours of surgery, Dr. Langer told him multiple nerves and tendons had been severed in his hand, and Dr. Langer had done his best to repair it.
The patient was anxious about his follow-up visit with Dr. Langer because he wasn’t sure he wanted to see what was left of his hand. Dr. Langer escorted him to the hand therapy clinic to introduce him to Erica Hranicka, the occupational therapist who would reconnect him to his hand over the next 30 appointments. Together, they unwrapped his bandages and had him move parts of his hand. It was mostly encouraging and Erica’s casual conversation and quiet confidence melted his anxiety.
With great relief, the patient realized he would likely get back the use of his hand if he continued to work with Erica and follow her plan. It turned out to be a very positive, pleasant experience, and Erica kept him focused and on track. He actually looked forward to his therapy appointments.
This patient attributes his recovery to a nest of selfless, caring, positive people who were there to help along the way. In gratitude, he made a generous gift to the Tuality Healthcare Foundation in honor of his caregivers: Dr. Langer, for his immediate response and skillful repair of his hand; and Erica Hranicka for helping him transform “an ugly, angry, swollen club, back into my hand as I remember it.” The patient said that these care providers are “the real deal and deserve our admiration.” He thinks of his contribution as an investment in the future of top quality healthcare in Hillsboro and is happy knowing it will be put to good use.
His therapy appointments have concluded, but he continues his recovery efforts with what he learned from Erica. He is able to do everything he needs his right hand for, including finally shaking hands with Dr. Langer.