A patient's recovery will continue long after he or she leaves the hospital.
After critical illness, patients often experience muscle weakness, problems processing information, and/or feelings of anxiety or sadness. These feelings and physical symptoms may make one feel alone.
You are not alone. THRIVE aims to help patients and their families/friends to be advocates and health navigators.
Patients and families are on this journey together but may be affected differently. A number of patient and family resources are available to help caregivers, co-workers, teachers, family and friends caregivers, co-workers, teachers, family and friends better understand what you’ve been through.
Many of these feelings and symptoms are part of post-intensive care syndrome
(PICS). Most of these are common to patients discharged from the ICU; many patients experience unique symptoms as well.
- You may feel stiff and/or weak.
- You may feel mentally frail, perhaps afraid, or have vivid memories from your time in the ICU.
- You might have some peculiar symptoms: sense of taste, smell or something else may change.
Recovery may require weeks, months or years, depending on your health before your critical illness and the duration and severity of the illness. Working with healthcare providers on both physical and psychological well-being is the cornerstone of the recovery journey.
- Muscle weakness will improve, and physical therapy will help.
- A visiting nurse could help organize a home to keep me safe from falls.
- A visiting occupational therapist or physical therapist can help determine what medical equipment is needed during recovery.
- A visiting nurse or pharmacist can help organize medications and help me get rid of what I no longer need.
- Your family may feel just as stressed as you.
- Your family may know more of your story than you do. Be sure to leave the hospital with your ICU diary.