A healthy living blog from Marshfield Clinic Health System

Pediatric trauma team supports child and family after life-threatening injury

Ethan LehmanEthan Lehman is 10 years old and likes watching YouTube, riding his bike and scooter, and swimming. He’s even learning the ukulele. One day, Lehman was playing in the woods. A strong gust of wind caused a tree branch to break and fall on him. The afternoon adventure suddenly turned into an experience every parent fears. The branch crushed Lehman’s skull. He was taken to Marshfield Children’s Hospital by med-flight and immediately taken to surgery to remove part of his frontal lobe.

Lehman spent a total of four months in the hospital recovering from these life-threatening injuries – two of those months in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and two months in the Pediatric Rehabilitation Unit, CARF accredited and only program providing the highest level of care in northern and central Wisconsin.

Therapy helped Ethan relearn skills

Over their long journey, Ethan’s family utilized numerous services and support from Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals at Marshfield Children’s Hospital. Distraction stations were a help to Lehman for sensory stimulation from his bed to help calm him when he was agitated, experiencing pain or feeling frustrated from not being able to communicate his needs. A large part of Lehman’s recovery came from the Snoezelen Room where he was able to decompress and calm himself and eventually explore all of his senses. Through therapies, he was able to relearn how to control his large muscles and eventually learn his fine motor skills by learning to play the ukulele with music therapy.

A year later, Lehman is walking, talking and catching up in school. He continues to participate in therapies to further improve his language, memory and communicative skills. Lehman is also teaching his new puppy, Hedwig, how to do tricks. He hopes that one day Hedwig could become a therapy dog. Because Lehman looked forward to his therapy dog visits during his hospitalization.

Someday, Lehman would like to be a chiropractor. His family and care team at Marshfield Children’s Hospital continues to help him become all the wants to be. Lehman is proof that if you never give up, there are no limits to what you can do.

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