Spinal Cord Injury
Dan Herrera had a full plate — the husband, father of two and full-time registered nurse (RN) was also earning his master’s degree. But Dan’s busy life hit the brakes on September 2019, when a car accident put the 34-year-old in the hospital with a spinal cord injury and paralysis in all four limbs. Dan and his wife, Tippi, decided to transfer to Baylor Scott & White Institute for Rehabilitation – Dallas in October for intensive physical and occupational therapy. His main goal was to return to as much independence as possible and continue his studies. Dan made excellent progress while in rehab. His sessions focused on everything from driving a wheelchair and learning how to sit up without help to completing daily self-care tasks and figuring out a new way to use a stethoscope. While the accident slowed Dan down, it didn’t stop him. During his rehabilitation, he finished final papers, projects and tests from his hospital bed with Tippi’s help. On December 11, 2019, Dan attended his hooding ceremony at the University of Texas at Arlington. Some of his therapists cheered from the audience as he wheeled across the stage and was recognized for his hard work before and after the accident. By the time Dan was ready to leave for home, it was New Year’s Eve. He’d met the majority of his goals, including feeding himself, shaving, brushing his teeth and dressing with assistance. He could easily navigate his power wheelchair and was starting to spend more time propelling a manual wheelchair. He could transfer himself, though still requires assist from his wife. Dan continues to make great progress. He gives a lot of credit to his family for their support and encouragement. Dan’s motivation, commitment, good humor and kindness made an impact on everyone he worked with during his time at Baylor Scott & White Rehab. He will make an incredible difference in the lives of his own future patients.
Learn more about our Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation program.