Stroke Survivor Regains His Voice Nearly Two Decades Later

For 30 years, Joe Carreiro was a hardworking man in the construction business, using his talents to help construct large-scale additions within hospitals in Boston, Massachusetts. In his free time, you’d find Joe and his wife Jerri enjoying New England’s natural beauty while camping and fishing.

In 2003, Joe had a stroke soon after moving to Tennessee. The stroke left him partially paralyzed, but he was able to gradually recover in the months that followed. But then just a year later, Joe suffered a brain stem stroke, once again paralyzing him and leaving him in critical condition. Doctors initially gave Joe a 5% chance of survival.

Not only did Joe experience aphasia, but his vocal cords were also severely damaged by these medical events, which limited his ability to vocalize anything at all.

Joe and Jerri tried what they could for years, but ultimately were left without any significant solutions. It left Joe feeling frustrated and alienated.

In 2021 — 18 years after his initial stroke — Jerri and Joe talked to a new caregiver about the lack of progress he had made over the years, and how most therapies and strategies were boring and frustrating. So, the new caregiver suggested Lingraphica. “I said ‘OK, I’m willing to try anything that’s going to help him,’” Jerri explains.

Joe Expresses His Thanks After 18 Years

 Today, Joe takes his TouchTalk with him wherever he goes. “From doctor visits to church, we show it to everybody we can.”

“When he had his stroke, I had to stay with him almost 24/7 because nobody could understand what he needed,” said Jerri. Now, Joe has regained a sense of independence through his TouchTalk.

“Now I can be a part of a conversation, not just a piece of furniture,” Joe says. “Now that I have the device, I can express myself and my feelings.”

One of his happiest moments since getting his Lingraphica device came when he could finally thank his church after nearly two decades of their support. He used his TouchTalk to program his heartfelt message of thanks to those who have been there for him since the beginning.

Joe wants to tell others like him to not give up. “I don’t want to hear ‘I can’t.’ I want to hear ‘I’ll try.’” Joe uses the built-in therapy features to practice his speech with his caregiver. He’ll also use the record feature and re-record his own voice until he’s happy with it. People who haven’t heard his voice since his 2004 stroke are finally able to hear him again thanks to his dedication and willingness to try something new.

“The whole process with Lingraphica was so easy. Anytime I had a question, you were there for us,” Jerri says. “It has completely changed our lives.”

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We help adults with speech and language impairments to reconnect with family and friends, improve communication, and live their best lives. Call us at 866-570-8775 or visit the link below to get started.

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