Former College Student Nearly Taken Off Life Support Makes Dramatic Recovery, Returns Home after More than Two Years of Treatment - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

Former College Student Nearly Taken Off Life Support Makes Dramatic Recovery, Returns Home after More than Two Years of Treatment

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SOURCE Barrow Neurological Institute

PHOENIX, June 18, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- After more than two years of intensive neuro rehabilitation at Barrow Neurological Institute at St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix, former University of Arizona student Sam Schmid has officially graduated from his grueling therapies and has returned to his hometown of Tucson, Ariz. to begin school and work. Schmid, 23, made international headlines in 2011 after wiggling two fingers as medical staff discussed taking him off life support. His tremendous recovery is being called miraculous by many.

Watch Sam Schmid’s amazing comeback at Barrow from a brain injury at

To share his remarkable comeback, a video has been created highlighting Schmid's recovery. Be Inspired: Sam's Miracle, can be found on

"It's taken a great medical team and hard work to make the type of recovery I've made," says Schmid. "Not only did I learn to walk and talk again but I've learned how to reintegrate myself back into the community."

Schmid suffered critical injuries including a brain aneurysm, stroke, and a severe brain injury from a five car accident in Tucson in 2011. Emergency responders originally declared him dead at the scene but Schmid began to respond. He was flown to Dignity Health's Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix to undergo brain surgery. More than a week later and with no responsive signs, discussions began about taking him off life support. His brain surgeon, Dr. Robert Spetzler, however recommended keeping him on life support for one more week. That evening, Schmid began following commands by holding up two fingers.

Schmid's long recovery began at Barrow's inpatient Neuro Rehabilitation Center where he re-learned to speak and walk. He then began outpatient therapy at Barrow's Center for Transitional Neuro Rehabilitation (CTN) where he spent 40 hours a week undergoing intensive therapies. As part of Barrow's CTN program, Schmid began transitioning back to work by working at Safeway. Now back in Tucson, Schmid has enrolled in a college course and is applying for jobs.

"When I first started treating Sam, he was learning the basic functions of life such as swallowing," says Dr. Kristi Husk, Schmid's neuropsychologist at Barrow. "Just two years later, he's back in school and playing basketball. His recovery is incredible."

Barrow is one of the world's leaders in treating neurological disorders and performs more brain surgeries than anywhere in the United States.

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