Left to right: Molly Dunsworth, assistant director of rehab; Dorothy Mitchell; and Catherine Schneider, physical therapist assistant

When Dorothy Mitchell came to The Westchester House in Chesterfield, Missouri, on Nov. 5, 2018, she had been hospitalized with a urinary tract infection.

 

The experience left Mitchell with muscle weakness and decreased balance. She needed maximum assistance with bed mobility and dressing and moderate assistance with transfers, such as getting in and out of bed. She also had some difficulty with recall.

 

Mitchell took part in physical, occupational and speech therapies five days a week. PT helped her with her strength and balance, including using a special exercise machine, while OT worked with her on regaining independence in her activities of daily living, such as bathing, dressing and brushing her hair. Speech therapy helped her with memory skills.

 

“Dorothy was always eager for therapy sessions,” said Catherine Schneider, physical therapist assistant. “She actively participated in all sessions and pushed herself, setting goals for each.”

 

On Jan. 16, 2019, Mitchell returned home. She can now transfer with someone standing by, as well as walk with a front-wheeled walker with stand-by assistance. She can also go up and down five steps with someone holding on to steady her.

 

“They got me going again,” said Mitchell.