Susan had to laugh about the accident. The museum docent, age 69, was dashing through the Upper West Side apartment she shares with her husband—who was recovering from a broken ankle—to grab something from her desk. “Funny story,” she says. “I tripped over my husband’s crutches.”
When Susan fell on her outstretched hand, she broke her right wrist. She headed to NYU Langone’s Samuels Orthopedic Immediate Care Center, where she learned she would need surgery to repair the distal radius fracture, which also affected the wrist joint. A former colleague of her son—by coincidence, a hand surgeon in California—recommended hand and wrist surgeon Nader Paksima, DO, MPH.
Dr. Paksima performed surgery to repair the wrist fracture in January 2020. “I’ve had a few surgeries in the past, and recovery has been painful. But after my wrist surgery, I felt great,” Susan says. “I didn’t really have pain and didn’t have to take any pain medication or anything.”
At her postoperative appointment a couple of weeks later, Dr. Paksima checked that her wrist was regaining strength and range of motion. For her comfort, safety, and convenience, her next follow-up appointment with Dr. Paksima was a video doctor visit, as were her occupational therapy sessions with Tatyana Khazanova, OTR/L, an occupational therapist with Rusk Rehabilitation who offers outpatient rehabilitation at NYU Langone Orthopedic Center.
“It’s been very convenient to be able to do my therapy at home, and I didn’t have to worry about having to travel back and forth.”—Susan, Age 69
“My hand was working quite well by the time I had my first visit with Tatyana,” Susan says. “But she could tell that it wasn’t 100 percent. She gave me some exercises so I could stretch out the muscles more. During my second visit, Tatyana gave me slightly harder exercises and explained that I should push myself so I could feel the muscles, but not so much that it hurts.”
After three sessions with Tatyana, Susan noticed marked improvement in her wrist’s strength, range of motion, and functionality. She was able to lean on her hand and bear her weight without pain and was able to lift heavier items. Susan gradually returned to the activities she enjoyed doing before her accident. “I feel like it’s quite good,” she says.
Susan, who has had physical therapy before in an office setting, said that her video visit experience provided the same level of personalized care as an in-person visit—plus she didn’t have to travel or sit in a waiting room.
“Tatyana and I could see each other, and I was able to follow along as she showed me the exercises to do,” Susan says. “It’s been very convenient to be able to do my therapy at home, and I didn’t have to worry about having to travel back and forth.”