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Nurse holds hands of patient

Five Lessons My Patients Taught Me About Surviving a Pandemic

Although it can be a lot of effort to support what our patients are going through, we rehab nurses are lucky to get to know some amazing people as they go through an epic, if not always glamorous, journey. I’d like to share a few examples of ways my patients’ resilience has informed my capacity to get through this time of shared difficulty.


Mike's Story of Recovery from Spinal Cord Injury

Mike's Story: Intensive Therapy & Game-changing Research Lead to His Recovery

Mike's life changed instantly after he fell down cement stairs, sustaining a spinal cord injury that left him unable to move from the chest down.

Patient Story

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A Day to Celebrate – Michael’s Stroke Anniversary

Each January 3rd, Michael V. reflects on the day six years ago that radically changed his life. But this is also a day that he chooses to celebrate. Read why Michael says his stroke anniversary is a day to celebrate. 


Neuromuscular mechanisms of specific trunk interventions in children with cerebral palsy

The goal of the proposed study is to examine the neuromuscular mechanisms underlying the therapeutic effect of hippotherapy and determine whether repeated exposure to a pelvic perturbation force would be effective in improving trunk postural control and gait of children with cerebral palsy. This study is supported by NIH/NINDS, 1R01NS115487, Date of Project Period: 03/01/2020-02/28/2025

Research Project

Shirley Ryan AbilityLab at AAPMR21

PMR on Point.

Welcome to PMR on Point, a PM&R newsletter, which taps the brainpower of our clinicians, scientists and alumni to highlight our specialty from every angle.


Jacob Brewer does physical therapy at Shirley Ryan AbilityLab

'I'm just thankful to be here': Lightning strike survivor recounts his 4-month journey to recovery

After surviving a lightning strike, after enduring multiple surgeries to open his shins and forearms to save him from compartment syndrome, Jacob Brewer was being treated at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab in downtown Chicago where he was receiving physical and occupational therapy.


Small home exterior

Making a home accessible after a severe injury can be overwhelming — but it doesn’t have to be. Here’s one mom’s advice.

At Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, people arrive after lives change in minutes — a gunshot wound, a car crash, a stroke. When patients are discharged, they often need to approach their home differently. Occupational therapist Kelsey Watters said they first consider locations like the bathroom and the entry.


Bobby Roundtree

Paralyzed ex-Illinois football star is down but never out

A year and a half after a life-changing accident, paralyzed former Illinois football star Bobby Roundtree opens up about loneliness, frustrations, the desire to inspire and his ultimate goal: independence.


Alonso relearns how to walk at Shirley Ryan AbilityLab

WGN Investigates: A dangerous and deadly year, Children caught in Chicago’s crossfire

It’s been a violent year in Chicago. And increasingly it is children who are getting shot. WGN Investigates took an in-depth look at the lasting legacy of our violent streets.


We're grateful for your support

2020 Impact Report

Each year, Shirley Ryan AbilityLab prepares an annual Impact Report to celebrate the accomplishments of our community-based Quality of Life Programs, research initiatives and medical education programs — all of which is made possible through the support of our generous donors.