A Creative Approach to Rehabilitation, Health, and Wellness
Updated: Aug 16
Article content provided by NeuroHope
Life can change in an instant without warning, which is exactly what happened to Chris Leeuw. An active 28-year-old in the prime of his life was met with a life changing injury while cliff jumping in southern Indiana. As an experienced jumper, Chris made several successful leaps into the water from various heights, but it was his final jump that would forever alter his reality. Leaping from nearly 50 feet in the air, Chris successfully nailed his jump but as he resurfaced, he noticed another jumper pummeling towards him. Unable to swim away in time, Chris and the jumper collided, headfirst, into one another instantly shattering Chris’ C4 and C5 vertebrae, leaving him paralyzed and helplessly drifting in the water.
The initial injury was the first of many battles Chris would face on his road to recovery. After spending a week in the ICU, following surgery to repair his spinal cord, Chris and his family discovered they would be thrown into a world of quadriplegia, the horrors of a broken body, and the potential permeance of his condition. But refusing to give up his mobility freedom, Chris transferred to a rehabilitation hospital where he quickly began physical therapy hoping to defy the odds and walk out the front door. However, Chris would never see that day. Though having an excellent insurance plan, Chris was unable to continue his rehabilitation efforts as his insurance capped on the recovery timeline.
Eight weeks later, Chris reluctantly left the place he believed to be the key to his recovery. Still paralyzed and in need of assistance for basic activities of daily life, Chris was faced with two options; return home, hire a homecare nurse, and purchase a van to transport him to therapy sessions or move to a nursing home that wouldn’t be equipped to cover his needs. As Chris and his family frantically searched for a better solution, they were soon introduced to Neuroworx.
It was at Neuroworx, a specialty clinic for spinal cord injuries in Utah, where Chris would spend 36 months of his life intensely working to restore his mobility. In those short months, Chris went from relying on a cane and wheelchair to riding a bike and driving a car. Upon completing his rehabilitation therapy at Neuroworx, Chris realized his road to recovery had noticeable gaps. Deciding to follow the example set by Neuroworx, Chris set forth to repave the road to recovery and gave birth to NeuroHope.
NeuroHope strives to create longer-term, affordable access to cutting-edge rehabilitation services for individuals residing in Indiana, allowing them to quickly return to an independent lifestyle. Fast forward five years later, NeuroHope has improved the lives of more than 150 individuals as they journeyed to reclaim their mobile independence. As part of Rehab Medical’s mission to improve lives, the company proudly supports NeuroHope by helping them foster improved rehabilitation services for those suffering from life altering injuries. To learn more about NeuroHope and how you can support the organization, visit www.neurohopewellness.org