HOUSTON — He defeated cancer as a child, and now a Louisiana man is facing an entirely new battle. Wayne Moorehead had both arms and both legs amputated last fall. But he's not letting that stop him from getting back to life.
Through laughter and a light heart, Moorehead is taking his new life in strides -- slow and steady, careful and concise.
"We start on just one simple step," Moorehead said.
As with learning to walk, recovery is one step at a time. And for a man, who only six months ago had all his limbs, no single step is an easy one.
"I'm not that upset about it. I'm really not. Because I can't change it," Moorehead said.
He thought he had a stomach bug last July, but it was much worse.
"That's when the necrosis started, and that's when they realized that I'd become septic," Moorehead said.
Septic, lying in a hospital bed, Moorehead had to sit and wait for the necrosis -- basically the dying of his limbs -- to stop. The result was amputations at both thighs and above the wrists.
"I wanted them gone because I couldn't do anything with them. I just wanted to get to the next phase of my life. You know, what's next?" Moorehead said.
And what's next is unbelievable. Today, Wayne's not just surviving, he's thriving.
"He's very aggressive with his rehabilitation. I think it was that mindset that's helped him progress not only in the hospital, but even since he's left," Dr. P. Jacob Joseph with TIRR Memorial Hermann/UTHealth said.
From cooking at home, to swimming on his own, to walking without help at TIRR Memorial Hermann -- because to him, sitting around waiting for life to happen is not an option.
"You pick yourself up by the bootstraps, mine are a little shorter than they used to be. But you pick yourself up and you move on. Because this world is not going to wait for you. It's going to keep going," Moorehead said.
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