Norma Pugh's Story

Local Woman Gets Back on Her Feet with the Help of St.Vincent Salem’s Orthopedics Program

Norma Pugh HeaderNorma Pugh has been a fixture in Washington County since 1959. She has volunteered at St.Vincent Salem Hospital for nine years, sat on various committees for her church and helped behind the scenes with numerous political campaigns. But last May, while house hunting; she missed a step going from the kitchen to the garage, and fell.

Norma Rehab 1

She was taken immediately to St.Vincent Salem Hospital’s Emergency Department where it was confirmed that she had a fractured hip. Her son and grandson, who is a physician in Louisville, came to her side immediately and reviewed her options with Dr. L. Chiru, Pugh’s family physician. It was clear that St.Vincent Salem Hospital could offer everything she would need from surgery through recovery and on Saturday, May 22, Orthopedic Surgeon, Waqar Aziz, M.D., performed her hip repair surgery.

"Norma’s fracture was low on the socket area of the hip, so a titanium device called a gamma nail was inserted to hold the hip together until the bones could heel," stated Dr. Aziz. "The following day, Norma was performing toe touches and bearing weight on the hip to begin her therapy and recovery. Within a few days, she was walking down the hallway of the hospital."

Pugh remained in the hospital for three weeks following her surgery, first as an inpatient, then as a patient on St.Vincent Salem’s Skilled Nursing Unit. "The skilled nursing unit allows patients who have been through a major surgery, such as Norma’s, more time to recover. The unit provides patients with 24-hour access to skilled nursing care and rehabilitation therapies," said Shannon Lyons, manager of inpatient services at St.Vincent Salem Hospital.

Norma Rehab 2

After three weeks Pugh was released from the hospital and began four weeks of outpatient physical therapy.

"The Rehab staff was very gentle with me," said Pugh. "I got to work with all of the staff and they were all wonderful. The last two weeks of my physical therapy, they started working with me on the stairs."

Pugh is back to her normal activities, except, she says, "I’ve not done any more house hunting!" She enjoys spending time with her friends and family, including her 11 month old grandson, Teddy. "I can't quite keep up with him yet, but I’m getting there!"