As a retired industrial electrician, Kenneth Eoff was used to being on his feet.
That changed when the 75-year-old resident of the Show Low area, who also had renal disease, developed an infection with a non-healing wound. Sadly, the situation required a below-the-knee amputation on his left leg.
After surgery, Eoff was in a wheelchair and using a sliding board to get in and out of bed with moderate assistance. But he was determined to get better and to walk again with the help of a prosthesis and rehabilitation from trained physical and occupational therapists.
Eoff came to Payson Care Center in Payson, Arizona, on Nov. 15, 2018, and eagerly started a therapy program designed to meet his goals. PTs and OTs worked with him five days a week to build his strength and balance, as well as guide him in how to take care of daily self-care tasks while adapting to his new situation. They helped him prepare for his prosthesis and practice walking with it – including in realistic settings with various obstacles in the way.
“Therapy helped me to understand that I can live a near-normal life despite my handicap,” said Eoff. “The reassuring staff took me step by step through my rehabilitation process. They made me independent again.”
“Ken was a hardworking client since the beginning of his rehab stay,” said Molina Quintero, physical therapist assistant. “He was determined every day he would walk again. He never declined a day of service despite having low energy some days after receiving dialysis, and that says a lot about his character.”
Eoff successfully returned home on Feb. 6, using his prosthetic with the help of a walker and caring for himself independently. He has been writing science fiction and hopes to publish a book soon.
“Ken knew he would get back home with his wife and continue living their dream together,” said Claudia Martinez, occupational therapist assistant.