Tiffany Brantley had no way of knowing that her life was about to change forever when she laced up her running shoes and headed out the door early one morning. Her short run quickly turned into a nightmare. She remembers turning left out of her apartment complex and heading down the sidewalk. Then others have to fill in her story.
A driver was speeding and lost control of his car. He came up on the sidewalk and was going so fast that he sent Tiffany flying into a brick wall. A witness to the accident saw Tiffany open her eyes and immediately got down, held her hand and prayed with her while they waited for the ambulance.
“I took Jesus on the run with me that morning. It’s a blessing that I’m here telling you my story.”
The next thing Tiffany remembers is hearing the doctors and nurses say “she’s not moving her toes, she’s not moving her feet.” She thought to herself, they must be talking about someone else. Dazed and confused, she faded back into sleep. The next time she woke up she discovered she was in the ICU at Beacon Memorial.
I took Jesus on the run with me that morning. – Tiffany
The right care at the right time
Tiffany learned that she had been hit by a car driven by a drunk driver. Upon arrival at the Emergency Room, the orthopedic trauma team immediately took her into the operating room where they led an 11 ½ hour surgery. She had four fractured vertebrae, a shattered pelvis, a broken left leg, two fractured ribs, collapsed lungs, a burst bladder and other extensive injuries.
When Tiffany entered the emergency room that day, her caregiver was Dr. Christiaan Mamczak. Prior to his work at Beacon, Dr. Mamczak served as an orthopaedic trauma surgeon in Kandahar, Afghanistan during Operation Enduring Freedom and aboard the USNS Comfort during Operation Unified Response for the 2010 Haitian earthquake humanitarian relief effort and yet had rarely seen a case as bad as hers. After waking up from surgery, Tiffany finally met Dr. Mamczak and immediately had a positive feeling just from his manner and attitude. See, he walked into her room with a full skeleton figure so he could show her exactly what had happened to her and help her understand the long road of healing ahead of her.
“We all have a purpose in life and I know God is doing great things through Dr. Mamczak.”
Dr. Mamczak was also there to discuss another surgery that he wanted to do fairly quickly. Normally the recovery from a long traumatic, emergency surgery would justify waiting but he knew the best plan of action was a second surgery right away – a very complicated surgery – to correct her spine and pelvic alignment. He knew that she had led an active lifestyle before the accident and he wanted to give her the best chance of a full recovery.
Determined to beat the odds
Tiffany agreed to the second surgery and then began the long journey of recovery. She kept encouraging herself, telling the nurses that she knew she would play golf again and walk again. Still, it was difficult going from a very busy, active lifestyle to one where people had to help her do every little thing. What saved her? Her high level of physical fitness, her faith and the expert care at Beacon Health.
“I could not have received better care from any facility. The Beacon Bone & Joint team truly saved my life.”
Tiffany’s team at Beacon Health extended beyond the orthopedic caregivers. She had a number of different doctors focused on her care and they all worked together seamlessly. From her care in the ICU, through multiple surgeries, and then the lengthy rehabilitation journey in physical therapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy, Tiffany never felt neglected, “They made me feel comfortable in an uncomfortable environment. They gave me the care and place I needed to rest and recover.”
We all have a purpose in life and I know God is doing great things through Dr. Mamczak. - Tiffany
Connecting with heart
Beacon Health is the type of place that does more than provide expert care for orthopedic trauma. The doctors and nurses at Beacon Health care about their patients as people and this support made a world of difference to Tiffany: “Dr. Mamczak is my doctor but I also call him my friend.”
Two months after the accident, Tiffany was surrounded by her family and friends to lead a celebration walk from her wheelchair. You can imagine her surprise when she looked up to see Dr. Mamczak, his wife and children, and even his parents there to support her and wish her well. A year later, after additional extensive surgeries and many months of rehabilitation, Tiffany was able to lead the second annual celebration walk on her feet. Dr. Mamzack was there with her again every step of the way.
Dr. Mamczak is my doctor but I also call him my friend. - Tiffany
Orthopedic Trauma Surgery
If you or someone you love has experienced a multiple break fracture or traumatic injury from a vehicle accident, fall or other incident, our highly skilled surgeons can help.
Beacon’s orthopedic surgeons treat complex injuries that can result from extreme physical harm to bones and joints.
This may require fixing fractures, rebuilding a broken pelvis and hip, correcting severe spinal deformities or healing bone infections.
Beacon Health Foundation’s focus is a direct outgrowth of Beacon Health System’s deep commitment to enhancing the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being of the communities we serve. Our tax exempt identification number is 35-1536129.
*The quotations provided in this article are part of a testimonial from Tiffany Brantley; a patient at Beacon Bone & Joint Specialists.