- Caitlin Jensen, 29, has returned home after eight months of being paralyzed
- Jensen suffered a heart attack and two strokes after a chiropractor appointment
- She has since regained some movement in her head, legs and arms
A Georgia Southern University graduate has returned home eight months after suffering two strokes and was left paralyzed when a chiropractor slashed her arteries.
Caitlin Jensen, 29, was released from a treatment center on February 16 after regaining movement in her head, arms and legs, months after she was admitted to hospital on June 16 following an appointment with Dr. TJ Harpham, 42.
She suffered four ruptured arteries that led to strokes and heart attacks. Caitlin was hospitalized in a trauma center with limited body movement until she was eligible to be transferred to the Shepherd Center in Atlanta in September to begin physical therapy.
The graduate, who saw Harvard after suffering back and neck pain from long hours of schooling, has been approved to begin treatment in her new paid-for home with generous help. GoFundMe Donors who contributed $166,301 toward Jensen’s recovery.
Caitlin was seen in a video last month driving home with her family while nodding cheerfully to Jerry Reed’s “East and Down”.
Caitlin’s mother, Darlene, has posted eagerly about her daughter’s recovery since her hospitalization. Many of the photos show Caitlin sharing a smile while in her bed, wheelchair, or physical therapy.
Darlene proudly embraced the new challenge of bringing her daughter home to the transition to a new way of living.
“[Caitlin] She will return to a different life, but the most important part of all of this is that she is still living! Darlene wrote on Facebook.
When she was lying in the neurological intensive care unit in June, we didn’t know if that was the case, or what her cognitive ability would be if it did indeed work. Bringing her home next week is a gift of hope.
Darlene has bought a new home for her and Caitlin that features outdoor wheelchair rails and several accessibility features.
The new home also features an outdoor garden station to allow Caitlin to continue her beloved hobbies.
With the excitement and nerves of Caitlin moving from the Shepherd Center in Atlanta, the family experienced a small hiccup a few days into her stay at home that sent her back to the NICU.
“This isn’t the homecoming update I had planned to share tonight, but here we go,” Darlene wrote in a Facebook post on Feb. 20.
Caitlin fell outside tonight (and yes, I definitely blame myself and nothing can change that). She was admitted to the intensive care unit because she had a brain hemorrhage, and also had some external lacerations.
Darlene captioned a photo of Caitlin with a bloody bandage wrapped around her as she lay in a hospital bed with a neck brace.
“She’s been through a lot, and I feel terrible about this incident,” Darlene wrote. “I’m broken”.
A few days later, Caitlin was cleared to recover at home.
While the 29-year-old has regained some movement, she still cannot speak. Videos of Caitlyn’s performance showed her attempting to sing “Believe” to Cher while letting out tiny sounds.
Caitlin was able to say “Bro” after she was able to successfully say “Mom”, for the first time at the end of August.
“She’s also getting more and more votes,” said Darlene. “She can afford to wear the spoke valve all day now.”
Caitlin also carries a tablet with her that she communicates with. In a final letter she wrote to her mother, she says, “It’s okay that I fell.”
Aside from working on Caitlin’s speech, getting her sight back to where it was is another goal after she lost some of her sight from strokes.
In September, Caitlin’s movements progressed after she was only able to wiggle her toe and toes.
She was able to complete sit-ups unaided and took her first steps using a walking belt, which provided only 20 percent assistance.
Caitlin also started pottery lessons where she could move her hands to paint a vase, and participated in a meeting about mobility solutions.
Darlene previously told DailyMail.com that her daughter had gone to a chiropractor on several occasions to treat a stiff neck she had from “sitting at her desk for months in her final semester,” but she had never had a neck restraint. .
“You don’t think that a 28-year-old woman would face such an emergency and have a stroke,” she said.
Darlene previously remembered the shocking call she received from Harpham on her daughter’s phone.
‘I thought maybe she was feeling dizzy,’ said Darlene. It never occurred to me that it was such a serious event. I just thought she had either stood up too fast or was feeling slightly dizzy and they were just too much.
Darlene said she was next to her daughter when her heart stopped for 10 minutes.
Harpham has repeatedly refused to comment on the incident and was last seen by DailyMail.com boarding a plane with his family in July.
He was seen arriving at Savannah-Hilton Head International Airport amid controversy with his wife Jennifer, 37, and their three children on their Allegiant flight to Flint, Michigan, photos appear EXCLUSIVELY to DailyMail.com.
Public records show Harpham owns a second home an hour’s drive from Flint in Auburn, Michigan.
At the time, Caitlin’s family revealed that Harfam, a chiropractor at Richmond Hill Hospital, had not spoken to his patient or relatives since the botched operation.
The Richmond Hill Family Chiropractic page shows that Harpham no longer works there.
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