Robert was diagnosed with ALS several weeks ago. This is a progressive disease of muscle wasting and weakness which also involves his brain functioning (concentration, attention and memory). Robert had been living at home in his apartment until he had a serious fall on Oct. 22, striking his head. As a result, he had some bleeding in a deep brain structure called the corpus callosum which carries messages from one side of the brain to the other. The combination of these two conditions has resulted in his being unable to feed or dress himself. His mental functioning varies markedly from being able to carry on a coherent conversation at times to being confused and incoherent. He gets mentally fatigued easily and requires many short naps per day.
He was treated on the neuro trauma unit at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital and on Oct. 30 was transferred to Calvary Hospital in the Bronx, where he is receiving hospice care. Robert vacillates from being painfully aware of all he has lost and asking to go home to his apartment (which he understands will not happen).
Visiting hours at Calvary are 24/7. Before visiting his room, you'll need to get a visitor's pass at the front desk. Regular frequent contacts with visitors will be very important to Robert going forward.
If you would like to speak with Robert by phone, it is best to leave your phone number with the nursing station at 718 518 2655 and have them use his cell phone to contact you directly. He is unable to pick up his own phone, so a nursing staff will need to make the return call to you, based on their availability.
If you would like to send a card, the Calvary Hospital address is:
Room 642, 1740 Eastchester Road
Bronx, New York 10461
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