Vimal Patel was traveling about 140mph when he lost control of his vehicle.  He collided with a light pole and flipped his automobile onto a city street. Although he was unharmed in many ways, his feet took the majority of the impact and he broke both heel bones (calcaneus).

Four days after the accident, Patel was trying to process the news that his only option was to have both legs amputated below the knee. He decided he wanted a second option and sought out Dr. Brian Mullis, an IU Health orthopedic trauma specialist.

Both Mullis and a plastic surgeon from IU Health were necessary to save Patel’s feet. But things certainly weren’t perfect. The injury to his feet took its time healing at one point. Both leeches and hyperbaric oxygen therapy were recommended by the plastic surgeon. As Patel recovered, the medical team doted on him like a newborn. Healing started to take place gradually but steadily. However, he admits that there were times he worried he would have to undergo an amputation anyway.

Patel claims he is nearly back to normal now that it has been two years.

Besides arthritis and scars on his feet, Patel exhibits little traces of everything that he has been through. Patel claims to have traveled through jungles, walked on beaches, and even swam in oceans during the course of the past year and a half. Still unable to play basketball due to slow foot movement, he also has problems obtaining properly fitting dress shoes.