Eva's Story

Nov 17, 2021

“Two days after the accident, my daughter had a craniotomy to save her life.”


Eva Saseen was looking forward to attending the University of Michigan, but just two weeks after high school graduation, she sustained catastrophic injuries, as a passenger in a vehicle that was hit head-on.

“The accident caused a traumatic brain injury (TBI) and both her femurs were broken. Fatty embolism syndrome caused her brain to swell. Two days after the accident, my daughter had a craniotomy to save her life,” says Deborah Saseen.

Eva spent more than a month in a coma. Doctors had to wait for her brain swelling to diminish before repairing her femurs. Once stable, she was transported from Flint, Michigan to a Chicago rehabilitation hospital.

“Once her trach was removed, she became more alert and talked a little bit. Therapists worked on getting her up and walking. Our goal was to do stairs before going home to Flint,” says Deborah.

Seven months after the accident, Eva returned home where she continued outpatient therapy at the DMC Rehabilitation Institute of Michigan’s (RIM) Neurorecovery Center.

“I chose RIM because of the pool therapy, the quantity of qualified staff and it’s part of a hospital complex,” says Deborah. “I also liked that her therapists would work together on a plan specific to Eva.”

Deborah and Eva agree that RIM was the best place for her recovery. Five days a week they would drive from Flint for physical, occupational and speech therapy. Within weeks she was walking and talking better, and her fine motor skills improved to where she could open things, button and type.

“As part of my therapy, I worked at RIM’s front desk, answering phones and greeting people,” says Eva. “RIM even set me up with a vocational counselor and I’ve enrolled in college,” she adds.

Eva is looking forward to going back to school and earning a degree in healthcare.

Deborah says that no one would believe her daughter’s progress thanks to RIM. She appreciates how much everyone cared about Eva’s recovery.