In early winter, Shauna Olmos suffered what she thought was just a regular fall backward. She didn’t think much of it. But over a short amount of time, Shauna developed a fever and had increasing knee pain. This led her to seek further evaluation at the emergency department of a local hospital.
Tests run at the hospital revealed several concerns. Shauna tested positive for COVID-19 and had suffered an acute kidney injury in the fall. She also had severe sepsis, secondary to septic arthritis in her left knee. She underwent a surgical washout of her knee to remove the MRSA bacteremia, but a candida infection continued to grow from her wound site. Once the cultures cleared, Shauna transferred to Vibra Hospital of Denver for continued wound care.
The pneumonia Shauna suffered from made it difficult to ambulate when she arrived at Vibra. One of the first goals for Shauna’s stay was to wean her down to room air while continuing to monitor her IV antibiotics to clear the infection. Gradually, Shauna regained her strength and began working with the therapy team. “I got stronger and stronger to walk all over this place,” she said.
Shauna particularly liked working with Juan, a physical therapist who has been with Vibra for over nine years. “He would push you to work, without pushing you,” she said. “He is a great motivator, and it makes it easier to heal when these workers really care. It’s refreshing that they listen to you.”
Though she spent the holidays and her 40th birthday hospitalized, Shauna isn’t letting that stop her from reaching her goal of walking out of the hospital. She is excited to return home to her family, especially her daughter, who she describes as “my everything.” Though Shauna enjoys the company of the Vibra staff, she just wants to sit down and have a big dinner with friends and family.
Shanua has come a long way since she arrived at Vibra, and is determined not to take the little things for granted anymore.