My mom fell about two weeks ago breaking her elbow. After the hospital she was taken to rehab. At rehab she is refusing to even stand, she just tells me repeatedly that she hurts. In addition to this the rehab has been a nightmare, it is unsanitary, the staff is inadequate and we have had nothing but problems since she got there.
Depression has nothing to do with it. Refusing to move is common if the patient has only just found a position where the pain is least, and decides to freeze there.
If no other injuries are found, I would request the doctor prescribe IN_HOME PTor outpatient PT. If she is living with you (or vice-versa), she has someone watching over her; there's no need to be in a rehab place if she just needs to do exercises! If she is still somewhat mobile, then Rx from doctor for a PT facility (they would have more/better equipment that might help, but get referrals from others as not all places are the same). Our mother was mid-upper 80s when she had rotator cuff surgery - after an overnight stay, she went home (lived alone) and had PT come in. She did fine.
Personally I prefer being home, ever after major spinal surgery. I usually went home the next day and once it was approved went to PT - no rehab. I did get stuck in the hospital for almost 4 weeks once, and kept begging them to let me go home, even threatening to walk if I had to (might have taken several days, but I HATED being there!) They finally relented and brought in med delivery, all kinds of equipment and a nurse to prep my "feed bag" every day as well as do vitals, draw blood, etc. HUGE improvement!!! So perhaps mom just hates being there, and I do not blame her!!
6 and 1/2 years ago I fell down a flight of stairs and broke my elbow. I would have been 60 at the time and did not look forward to surgery, but I had NO movement in my arm and the pain was out of this world. After surgery, my arm was just as swollen, hurt just as bad and I still had very little movement in my arm.. Long story short. The pain and swelling were normal. I had a PT that I went to for 3 months. I exercised a lot. All of the exercises given by the PT. Then it took a couple of years to really get my strength back in that arm, but I have better motion in that arm than in the one I did not break! I think it is a combination of a great surgeon, a physical therapist who expected me to get all motion back, and my own determination to do just that--get back to normal. but it was not easy and did take a lot of work on my part.! P.S. I actually exercised both arms with all the exercises because I could really see where I was supposed to get to!
I have never heard it said its recommended not to visit in rehab. Therapy is only done maybe an hr in the morning and again in the afternoon. Not much for patients to do in between. You have to be there or even rehab gets away with murder. My Mom was in the hospital five days so rehab was recommended to get her walking. What a joke. She was in a wheelchair most of the day. I swore the next time she would have therapy in her AL.
Dad’s roommate was discharged from the rehab center with a surgically repaired shoulder fracture much sooner than we imagined he would be. This man’s son explained to us he would be taking his dad to a therapy center every day for therapy as an out patient so his dad could be at home with his family.
I’m wondering if this could be an option for your mother?
I speak from common sense. Get mother out of there!
For the moving her idea, what about going back to her surgical team at the hospital and asking them to make a fresh referral? After all, they won't want to see their skilled work going to waste through poor after-care. Good luck with this - your poor mother! Elbows are sooooo sore :(
Think about having the PT go over with her where the pain is; a portable xray can be brought in OR you can have her taken back to the hospital for imaging.
Her ortho doctor was literally furious; he wrote a letter to the rehab facility advising that she was not to be weight bearing for 6 weeks, with absolutely no weight bearing activity on the surgically repaired leg.
We presented the letter at a "care" meeting, staff did back down, the grouchy therapist suddenly was transferred to another in that facility's chain of rehabs, and Mom got a great therapist and progressed well.
2. Start researching rehab facilities, interview them with a checklist of issues, especially staffing ratio and food. The better ones in my area have chefs; they don't use prepacked frozen dinners shipped in and turned into undesirable blobs of unidentifiable substances like some rehabs do.
3. Address with her ortho doctor, not only her pain, but the inadequacy of the rehab facility. I'm guessing that one of the discharge planners selected it and made the arrangements? That happened to us too.
4. We also switched after my father suffered his second leg fracture, after getting a confirming letter from our ortho doctor, as one of his NPs explained that would be a good backup in case Medicare challenged the switch from one facility to another.
5. It's not always advised that family attend rehab, but I did with Mom until she got used to the new therapist. I also did with Dad after I transferred him from the unsatisfactory rehab place. I felt they had been through enough trauma, and I wanted to ease the transition so that they could start rehab under different conditions, and knowing that they still had family support.
5. And document everything wrong with the current rehab and complain to Medicare, after your mother is safely away from this place.