When Kristina Reynolds' son Tyler was born without a right foot and a club foot on his left foot, it launched the family on a new health care journey.
For most of his infancy, the family traveled to Salt Lake City, Utah, for surgeries, prosthetics fittings and physical therapy. The nine-hour drive was grueling for the family and Tyler continued to seem uncomfortable wearing his prosthetic. When Tyler was almost 3 years old, Reynolds knew it was time to make a change.
"We were looking at other options and that's when we talked to the clinic here," Kristina said. "It took us so long to find them. We didn't know it was available to us."
Tyler became a patient of Campbell County Health's Orthotist Robert Larson, who not only works to fit people with prosthetics, but he specializes in pediatric prosthetic care as well. He fit Tyler with a prosthetic with a bending knee when Tyler was just three years old and from that point forward, Tyler began working with physical therapists to enhance his abilities using the prosthetic leg.
Now once a week Tyler goes to physical therapy to work on a variety of skills from walking and running to skipping and jumping.
"It completely changed him," Kristina said. "He wouldn't even put on his leg before. It has given him so much freedom to be a kid."
Now a 4-year-old, Tyler has grown in confidence and skills with the help from Larson and the physical therapy team at Campbell County Health, Kristina said. Today he enjoys playing t-ball and soccer, as well as participating in everyday 4-year-old activities. For Kristina, the team at Campbell County Health Rehabilitation Services has helped not only Tyler, but the family as a whole.
"They take the time to question patients on how they're doing and what they can do to improve treatment," Kristina said. "It's been a phenomenal experience for us. It's so much easier on all of us. And it's helped Tyler realize that he's not alone—he's not the only person walking on a bendy leg (prosthetic)."
Those positive experiences are something Rehabilitation Services Manager Kristi Wilde, Physical Therapist, said her team strives to achieve with all patients.
"We get to know the patients and their families," Kristi said. "We really try to keep an almost family-like atmosphere."
Not only does that family-friendly atmosphere provide patients with a positive experience, but it also helps in their healing.
"If patients know you personally care, it motivates them to work hard to heal as well," Kristi said.
With a team of 30 physical therapists, occupational therapists and assistants, Rehabilitation Services offers a wide variety of services and specialty areas including programs to improve athletic performance, pelvic therapy to address lower back pain and incontinence, post-surgery therapy and back-to-work rehabilitation , to name a few. The services are offered through pediatrics through geriatrics by a team of well-qualified therapists, who are constantly undergoing continuing education to stay abreast of the latest therapy treatments and developments.
"We really promote continuing education," Kristi said. "The field is ever changing and you just have to stay on top of it."
Ultimately, the CCH's Rehabilitation Services strives to help patients meet their maximum potential, overcome obstacles and meet challenges head-on. For Tyler and his mom, the team has become family and a huge asset in helping Tyler walk, play, jump—or just be a normal child..
"It's been an outstanding experience," Kristina said. "Tyler looks forward to therapy every week."
Article written by Kim Phagan-Hansel, Wyoming freelance writer
Check out the commercial featuring Kristina and Tyler: