Alex Nobile: A miracle in stroke rehab

Alex Nobile: A miracle in stroke rehab
WILKES-BARRE TOWNSHIP, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – Sometimes motivation is just as important as medicine when trying to recover from a serious health setback. That’s certainly the case for a local lawyer who suffered a near-fatal stroke. The attorney from Kingston lived what he considered an active and healthy lifestyle before suffering a devastating stroke last fall. As Eyewitness News Healthbeat Reporter and stroke survivor Mark Hiller explains, what the Luzerne County lawyer has been able to achieve through therapy and willpower since then is nothing short of astounding. It’s been said you must first learn to walk before you can run. But after Alex Nobile’s stroke last October, learning to walk again was no sure thing. With his right side paralyzed, a team of Heinz Rehab Hospital therapists and a walking therapy system called “ZeroG” held him up to help take his first steps. “Lock your left knee. Shift your weight. Things you think about that you don’t think about when you’re walking,” said Alex. “There were days I thought I would never be able to do it.”

But through perseverance came progress. Using a therapy ball became part of Alex’s routine. “At first I was just rolling over and I had to learn to balance and then they used that to teach me how to stand.” Heinz Rehab Hospital Physical Therapist Jennifer Fox said, “We did anything and everything that would make him learn how his body was working again.” Heinz Rehab Hospital Occupational Therapist Wanda Evans added, “The one thing that he was able to do that a lot of patients aren’t able to after a stroke is he was able to take what we said and make those corrections like you know, you’re leaning to the left you know and incorporate those things into his daily life and improve his overall function.”

As days became weeks, Alex needed less and less help to walk. His wife, Ann, marveled at every step. “What can I say? His incredible spirit, determination, motivation,” she said. When asked how motivated he was, Alex replied “I was extremely motivated. I wanted to… I wanted to go home. I wanted to resume my lifestyle. I wanted to be able to hold my grandchildren.”

His grandson made him a four word message for inspiration. “Believe it. Achieve it”. Alex was discharged in early 2018 on his own two feet following a miracle in rehab he wouldn’t have any other way. “I would find a way. Yes, I would. And thankfully I did and obviously as I said throughout I didn’t do it myself.”

Alex says he also drew motivation from other rehab patients and points out he’s not the only one who didn’t quit on himself. Neither did his therapists and family. Alex is not only walking, but also golfing and plans to resume his work as an attorney.