There’s almost nothing Chuck Sullar can’t do with his hands.
He once worked as a mechanic. And as a long-time licensed contractor, he’s built houses and worked on various commercial construction projects. He also served in an executive capacity for more than a decade at the South Haven Housing Commission in southwest Lower Michigan.
But when an infection invaded his left big toe, there wasn’t exactly anything in Chuck’s tool box that he could turn to for comfort.
Luckily, he ended up at ACV, and was able to circumvent amputation – something that more than one health care expert had predicted he would have to endure.
“This past January, I had my annual physical, and I asked the doc to be brutally honest with me about my toe, and she said, ‘You’re going to lose that toe,’ and I said if I lose that toe, this is the last time you see me as a patient.”
A native of Florida and the son of a naval pilot, Chuck moved when he was a youngster to Illinois, where he finished high school and spent summers painting houses starting at age 15.
He entered the University of Iowa to initially chase a degree in engineering, but wasn’t a fan of the traditional college track. In fact, he had trouble accepting education even as a kindergartener, arguing with his mother that it was a bore, and the greatest insult of all was that he was expected to take a daily nap.
He abandoned his studies at U of I, later earning a degree in business from Spring Arbor University long after moving to Michigan.
In December of 2019, Chuck developed the infection, losing part of his toenail in the process. A doctor he consulted provided wound care, but wasn’t aggressive enough to Chuck’s liking: “After 10 weeks of that, I realized I would have to advocate for myself.”
He eventually saw another doctor in the South Haven area, and according to Chuck, “Almost everyone I talked to there mentioned Dr. Saab as someone I might want to consult.”
He made a phone call, and was told that he could be seen at ACV the next day.
Chuck has been thrilled with the results: “In just two to three weeks, my toe didn’t even look like the same damaged toe.”
Looking back, Chuck now realizes that had he not seen Dr. Saab and his team, “the gangrene that had formed on this toe would have become severe enough that I would have lost it. And there was no way I was going to let that just happen.”
Chuck has a unique perspective on ACV, because in his role with the housing commission and elsewhere, he helped lead team-building exercises. In assessing ACV, he remarks that “I have to say Dr. Saab’s team is one of the best I’ve ever encountered. Everyone pitches in like clockwork. I never saw any conflict. They’re just terrific.”
Chuck says that ordinarily, you have to put your trust in doctors and medical teams addressing your needs. But sometimes, you need to assess their approach, and ask yourself if they’re really doing everything they can for the patient: “I didn’t approve of their recommendations,” he says of practitioners he consulted before seeing Dr. Saab, “and so I ventured out.
“And now, I’m well on my way.”