Patient Story

Patient Story- Santo

Thank you Santo for sharing your story with us! Santo has been in both our LTAC and CBRF and has shared his story below.  You are a true inspiration and we have loved being a part of your recovery journey.  Keep up your great efforts- we know you can accomplish your goals! 

I arrived at Lakeview LTAC hospital on January 26, 2016. I had just been discharged from Advocate Good Shepard Hospital in Barrington, Illinois with their high praise of this facility. My care manager at that hospital was not exaggerating. The praise is greatly warranted.


When I arrived here I was bed bound and was in terrible health. Firstly, I was super morbidly obese and sadly weighed 630 lbs. I was suffering and debating if it would be best if I just had a second heart attack and died. I had tried to get surgery to help me lose weight, but was denied because of chronic heart disease.  I thought I was a lost cause. I have four children and I decided to fight for them and myself.


With firm resolve, I enabled my plan and Lakeview staff is enabling me to do it. I adopted a Paleo diet lifestyle, with a diet that is low carbohydrate and moderate in protein and fat. It has been my goal to get back to a normal weight range and to be more independent. I knew the journey would be long, but I DECIDED to do it.


When I first arrived at the Lakeview LTAC hospital I needed six staff members, Nurses and CNAs, to just turn me in the bed. I felt embarrassed because I needed so much help. The CNA and Nurses in the LTAC hospital were always very professional and very kind to me, so I felt less embarrassed as time went by.

“I got very emotional the first time I stood up in about 18 months. I could not hold back the tears.”


While in the hospital I was medically treated by an excellent staff of doctors. They treated me for my numerous heath issues. For example, as I was losing weight my cardiac medications that managed the symptoms of congestive heart failure needed to be lowered in dosage. I also started Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy while in the hospital. I was discharged from the hospital on August 17, 2016. With the excellent help of the clinical dietician, food service departments and PT and OT teams I managed to lose weight and get to 419 lbs while in the hospital.

My original goal was to lose 100 lbs while in the hospital. I exceeded my own expectations because of everyone’s help while in the LTAC. As a result of this weight loss, I went to only needing two staff members to assist me. My time at Lakeview is continuing in the CBRF, Community Based Residential Facility. I live in the unit. While here I get the services of a care manager, resident assistants, medical technicians, a residential nurse and medical doctor. Also for medical emergencies, paramedic teams are located in the building. In addition, I am fully supported by a clinical dietician, and PT and OT teams.


“As a result of being in the LTAC and CBRF, I am regaining my health and happiness”


This place is as excellent as the hospital. The PT and OT teams finally helped me to stand on August 10, 2016. This happens to be my daughter’s birthday. I got very emotional the first time I stood up in about 18 months. I could not hold back the tears. I continued to make progress with my weight and physical mobility. I now can walk, about 100 feet, with a walker. I also can propel a wheelchair for about 1 mile as a form of aerobic exercise about 3 days a week. As a result of my new lifestyle and the continuous medical support, provided by the CBRF, my heath is improving.


I no longer have the symptoms of diabetes. In fact my HGA1C, is now normal. I am off insulin for the first time in 7 years! My chronic lymphedema is under control. My chronic cellulitis is gone! My chronic leg and back pain are essentially gone. I have not had a hospital admission to a critical care hospital while at Lakeview Hospital or CBRF. Before coming to the Lakeview facility, I had 3 to 4 full hospital admissions per year for the past 12 years. In addition to all the fine services I receive here I can get transportation to my off site cardiologist and dentist.


Many of my fellow clients in the CBRF have become friends to me. Some of them have neurological problems and traumatic brain injuries. I have noticed these people are also treated with great care and respect. The facility kitchen even serves traditional meals on major holidays, like Thanksgiving and Christmas.


As a result of being in the LTAC and CBRF I am regaining my health and happiness. As of Feb 6, 2017 my weight is down to 303lbs. I still have more to lose, but I know I can do it because of this facility. I am very happy I decided to come to Lakeview Hospital and CBRF.


Sincerely, Santo S.







If you are a former patient of Lakeview Specialty Hospital & Rehab in Waterford, WI and are interested in sharing your experience please contact Jessica at:  j[email protected]. We would love to hear how you are doing!