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Smart Thinking: Comprehensive Neurological Rehabilitation Services

Lehigh Valley Health Network provides a full continuum of care

Neurological Rehabilitation Services

After a stroke, brain injury or spinal cord injury, neurological rehabilitation helps people recover their highest possible level of independence.

At Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN), there is a robust team of neurological experts, ensuring that you receive the right care and close to home.

When it comes to inpatient care, “patients benefit from seamless transitions to neurological rehabilitation. They also have immediate access to the hospital if needed,” says Beth Stepanczuk, MD, Medical Director of Inpatient Rehabilitation at Lehigh Valley Hospital (LVH)–Cedar Crest and LVH–Muhlenberg, two of five LVHN hospitals with inpatient neurological rehabilitation services.

“We even take complex cases with left ventricular assist devices, tracheotomy tubes and peripherally inserted central catheter lines.”

After leaving the inpatient unit, patients can continue their recovery journey, transitioning to one of LVHN’s 51 outpatient rehabilitation facilities.

Multidisciplinary care from the start

Physiatrists offer consultations in the hospital. In the acute rehabilitation unit, physiatrists, along with board-certified physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech-language pathologists, recreation therapists and neuropsychologists, conduct rounds to assess patients’ rehabilitation needs and develop individualized plans of care to improve independence and quality of life while addressing any medical needs that arise.

“Our multidisciplinary team sees patients as whole individuals,” says Christina Wood, PT, DPT, a Rehabilitation Clinical Specialist for stroke. “We create customized recovery plans to help each patient maximize their return to independence.” 

Individualized care

Following comprehensive inpatient rehabilitation, people may progress to outpatient care at LVHN sites located conveniently throughout the region.

Outpatient rehabilitation facilities are well equipped with innovative technology and board-certified therapists prepared to serve patients with a variety of neurologic conditions, such as stroke, brain injury, Parkinson’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and multiple sclerosis.

“When a full recovery is not possible, rehabilitation specialists can still recommend assistive devices for maintaining independence, such as supportive braces and wheelchairs,” Stepanczuk says. “The key to successful rehabilitation is assessing patients’ individual abilities and establishing trust,” Wood says. “We have seen patients after stroke unable to follow commands who required two-person assists progress to walking on their own by the time they finished with outpatient rehabilitation.”

State-of-the-art technologies

Rehabilitation specialists use various technologies to assess patients and help them learn how to safely perform activities of daily life.

For example, the EquiTest computerized dynamic posturography platform measures how individuals maintain balance while viewing different sensory conditions.

The Bioness Vector Gait and Safety System supports an individual in a harness while unloading a programmed amount of body weight, allowing them to practice functional movements without risk for falling.

Over time, people learn how to perform activities with less support from the system. The GAITRite pressure-sensitive walkway uses temporal and spatial parameters to analyze gait abnormalities.


Check the calendar

Providers, to refer a person for neurorehabilitation services, call 888-402-LVHN (5846). If you are a patient, call 888-402-LVHN to request an appointment.

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