Doctors weren’t sure Julie would survive her traumatic brain injuries suffered on October 10, 2020. Julie was riding an ATV at her uncle’s place in Lovelock, Nevada. She remembers it being very dusty as they were coming down the hill. Julie’s next memory is waking up in the hospital days later and not knowing why she was there.
Dr. Edward Perry, a board-certified neurosurgeon with fellowship training in complex spine, performed the emergency craniectomy to relieve pressure from the swelling in Julie’s brain.
A few weeks later, Julie was transported to Santa Clara Valley Medical Center (SCVMC), one of the country’s leading inpatient neurological rehabilitation centers. Continuing her recovery at SCVMC allowed her to be closer to her home and family in Los Altos, California.
Her road to recovery was not easy and involved occupational therapy, physical therapy, and speech therapy to help treat the aphasia Julie experienced following her accident. One of Julie’s most impactful symptoms was her ability to communicate her thoughts. “It was frustrating to understand what others were saying but be unable to verbalize my thoughts and feelings,” she explained.
Due to Covid shutting down many “elective surgeries,” Julie would remain without her bone flap until the end of January 2021, when Dr. Shahlaie of UC Davis Medical Center would perform her Cranioplasty surgery. Julie experienced more improvements in her recovery once her bone flap was back in place.
Julie is very determined and has made a nearly complete recovery. When her family asked what she wanted to do for her 32nd birthday, Julie said, “I want to drive to Reno.” Julie wanted to visit the hospital where her life-saving surgery took place. She also desired to meet Dr. Perry and say ‘thank you.’ Julie and her family made the drive to Reno, and they were able to spend time with Dr. Perry. “I was amazed that Julie made an effort to come visit me. It was a pleasure visiting with Julie and her family and witnessing her dramatic recovery,” Dr. Perry exclaimed.
Today, Julie treasures spending time with her family. They are staying active on the hiking trails this summer!