Gordon Foote – VitalStim Therapy Success Story

VitalStim restores vital skills

​​​​​​In June 2012, Gordon Foote was taking a walk with his wife when he first noticed something was wrong.

“My left foot was dragging,” he says. The next day, he had difficulty crossing his left leg over his right.

At the root of these coordination problems was a brain tumor — one that had been growing for 20 years. Foote was referred to James Moody, MD, independently practicing neurosurgeon on the medical staff at Methodist Dallas Medical Center, to remove the tumor.

Gordon Foote Thanks to VitalStim Therapy at Methodist
Rehabilitation Hospital, Gordon Foote can
enjoy his favorite foods again.

The surgery was a success; however, a series of complications and setbacks, including diagnosis of a brain disorder called encephalopathy, plagued Foote’s recovery. The disorder robbed him of his ability to speak and required him to be placed on a ventilator. To make matters worse, in his weakened physical condition Foote developed dysphagia, the inability to swallow.

Rehab to the rescue

At Methodist Rehabilitation Hospital, Foote began an innovative treatment called VitalStim® Therapy. A speech therapist used VitalStim to retrain Foote’s throat muscles to swallow and helped him overcome the dysphagia. Physical and occupational therapists also helped him gain independence for normal daily activities.

“I had great physical, occupational, and speech therapists at Methodist Rehabilitation Hospital,” says Foote, whose therapy has paid off. He can walk, speak, and swallow again.

“Now I can eat anything!” says the Chinese-food lover.

Working together for great care

Janie P. Bush, MS, CCC-SLP, speech language pathologist at Methodist Rehabilitation Hospital, credits Foote’s successful healing with his dedication to the VitalStim Therapy.

“Patients who understand how VitalStim can help them and are willing to work hard generally have the best results, such as the great outcome we saw with Mr. Foote,” she says.

Foote is quick to return the compliment, praising the Methodist facilities he visited, which also included Methodist Charlton Medical Center, for their support and witness of Christian values.

“There is a tenderness and sensitivity in the service each of them provides,” he says, also extending his gratitude to God. “It is very clear that He is a healer.”

From the summer 2013 edition of Shine magazine.