Success Story: Vent Weaning - Kimberly King
"Personal care was the key to my return to good health"
Kimberly King was diagnosed in 2008 with Stevens-Johnson syndrome, a rare and severe blistering disorder that causes lesions of the mucous membranes and the skin. Her case of Stevens-Johnson syndrome was very serious and progressed to the point that Kimberly ended up relying on a ventilator to breathe. She spent 150 days in various hospital settings, including acute care, intensive care and a nursing home.
Kimberly’s journey included a return trip to Lehigh Valley Hospital after a failed stint at a rehabilitation nursing facility closer to her home in York, Pennsylvania. “That nursing facility was not able to handle my case, and I ended up very ill and back in the ICU at Lehigh Valley Hospital,” notes Kimberly.
When Lehigh Valley Hospital was ready to release Kimberly for the second time to another level of care, her mother visited the Good Shepherd Specialty Hospital and was pleased with the facility, the staff and the encouragement of family involvement. Once transferred to the Specialty Hospital, Kimberly’s rehabilitation began in earnest.
“The Specialty Hospital’s personal care was the key to my return to good health,” says Kimberly. “The nursing staff was terrific. I usually had the same nurse for three days in a row, which allowed the nurses to get to know me and my complicated case. The therapists there pushed me, which is what I needed. If it wasn’t for the Specialty Hospital’s expertise in ventilator weaning, I don’t know where I’d be today.”
Kimberly’s vent weaning wasn’t easy and it took six weeks, but she left the Good Shepherd Specialty Hospital breathing on her own and ready for in-home therapy.
“The case worker at the Specialty Hospital worked with my mom and did an awesome job setting us up with home nursing and rehabilitation care, a hospital bed and other medical equipment,” says Kimberly. “I went home on August 15 and my goal was to walk by Halloween. Well, I wasn’t only walking, but I was driving a motorcycle by Halloween!”
Today, the 44-year-old mother is still working to regain the strength she lost during her long ordeal, but she is well on her way to a full recovery.
“For anyone who needs this level of care, I would definitely recommend Good Shepherd,” says Kimberly. “My experience at the Specialty Hospital was wonderful.”
Good Shepherd Specialty Hospital
at Lehigh Valley Hospital-Muhlenberg
South Entrance, 3rd and 4th Floors
2545 Schoenersville Rd.
Bethlehem, PA 18017