Several years ago, Matt Morling was in a severe accident when another driver hit his vehicle head on. This devastating crash took the life of his grandmother and left Matt with fractures to his neck, left femur and ribs.
Dr. Barbara Rodwin is familiar with the arduous rehab many patients like Matt have to go through. An Ottawa-based chiropractor practicing for more than 20 years, Dr. Rodwin’s multidisciplinary clinic specializes in a biomechanical approach to therapy, looking at the movement and function of the whole body. To provide varied perspectives and the broad skill sets to help her patients heal, Dr. Rodwin’s clinic includes a registered massage therapist (RMT), naturopath and kinesiologist.
Matt Morling would unfortunately need Dr. Rodwin’s clinic staff’s expertise and more.
Following the accident, Matt was wheelchair bound for more than two months, much of it spent in a rigid neck brace. When Matt first saw Dr. Rodwin, he had limited mobility. Due to his pain and difficulty walking, he shifted between using a wheelchair or on crutches. Matt had “the most extensive fractures to both feet I have ever seen,” says Dr. Rodwin.
Initially, the specialists at the hospital told Matt he might be permanently paralyzed, or at the very least, never being able to properly walk, much less run or engage in athletic activities, for the rest of his life.
“Matt’s treatment involved a number of different therapies and practitioners working in tandem,” explains Dr. Rodwin. “I provided active release and other manual therapies, while our RMT provided massage therapy. Our kinesiologist also helped get Matt back on his feet by analysing his balance and gait with force plate analysis and providing custom orthotics that accommodated a screw protruding from his heel.”
Dr. Rodwin also referred Matt to physiotherapists who provided exercises and stretches to help with his rehabilitation.
When Matt complained of pain from one of his screws, this inter-professional approach to rehab proved its value. The hospital specialists determined the screws were properly placed but Dr. Rodwin’s assessment found some warning signs. She had Matt sent for further X-rays, which revealed the screws were sticking into his adductor muscles in his thigh.
Rehab is the road to getting back to doing the things you love to do. “Mobility is so important,” says Dr. Rodwin. “Being able to move and get around pain free is such a psychological boost. It can help motivate patients to succeed.”
Today Matt is fully mobile and only visits Dr. Rodwin’s clinic about once a month for maintenance. He has hardly any scar tissue present in his joints, his mobility is solid and all his fractures have healed nicely.
An avid golfer, Matt is back on the course playing 18 holes whenever he wants. Best of all, Matt was recently married and able to celebrate this once in a lifetime occasion by dancing all night long among his friends and loved ones. “When I heard Matt was able to dance his wedding night away, I got goose bumps,” says Dr. Rodwin.