RGC Testimonials


Over the years we have been committed to supporting our patients, their doctors
and therapists. One measure of our success has been the feedback we've received
and we'd like to share some of their comments with you...

Catherine Porter

My truncal lymphedema was diagnosed in 2006, a result of radiation treatment to the chest. Recovery Garment Centre has been providing me with great fitting compression vests and gloves since 2010.

RGC's service has been a huge improvement over my previous experiences with two different pressure garment companies. Formerly, I waited between two and six months for orders to be filled, and garments often did not match the measurements and colours on order. My lymphedema was not being managed well and I was frustrated and uncomfortable.

With RGC, from measurement to delivery, my compression-wear is ready within one week! Roberta has assembled a team with an amazing company ethic and identity. Walking into RGC's open and inclusive workspace, Roberta's team makes me feel welcomed, relaxed and a participant in making a garment that's right for me. My requests for alterations are thoughtfully considered and fabric and construction options provided.

The individualized attention spent making and delivering a garment that fits me better and is easier to put on has meant that I feel better getting dressed every morning, and for the rest of the day!

Thank you, Roberta and Team!


Marshall Leslie

October 31, 2012

Following successful surgery to remove a melanoma on my right leg, a lymphoedema appeared. The plastic surgery removal had occurred at the narrow point on my right leg, just above the ankle joint, and both the “divot” and the lymphoedema were awkward. I asked the physiotherapist attached to oncology at St. Joseph’s Health Centre for assistance, and a recovery garment was recommended.

The Recovery Garment Centre, at 16 Heintzman Street, in Toronto has been very helpful to me, from all perspectives – making an appointment, completing forms, fitting, and the final product. Also important, since I am a reasonably active person, I often am not aware that I am wearing an elasticized stocking that reaches to my knee. Most important, it appears to work.

I recommend the Recovery Garment Centre.

Yours truly,
Marshall Leslie.

Renny Gunawan

October 2011

My injury was due to a fire from cooking oil that I was heating up (to fry some fries) for my son's lunch. The pot burst into flames, I was able to turn the single burner off and was trying to find a way to suffocate the flames. Anyway, as I was looking for something to put out the fire, my son suddenly appeared close to the fire and questioned about what was happening. That is when I began to panic, concerned that he would approach the fire while I was looking for something to suffocate it. So I redirected him back to his movie and rushed back to pot, thinking that if I held it, I would have control and he would not be harmed.

In the midst of my panic, I didn't realize that I was splashing hot oil on my left arm and hand and sprinkled on my chest and fire was burning to my right hand, which was holding the pot. Eventually I threw it over my balcony and luckily it fell on a patch of deep puddle and doused the fire.

RGC was very attentive, listened to my story, made sure that the garment they were providing me was created for my needs and if there were any concerns, they respond promptly and adjust accordingly.
Delivery was fast. If they shipped it, it got to me the next day.

Garments were quiet sturdy. I don't have to use them anymore but I still do and it still holds nice and firmly to my skin.

As I have mentioned above, they design specifically for each individuals needs. I required skin grafts so they were taken from my upper hips, RGC created a special garment to fix that area as well.

The staff are great, easy to talk to and understanding.

Renny Gunawan

Julie Hoeflaak

On April 16, 2006 our 3 ½ yr old son fell backwards into a fire pit while at a family dinner. He was burned over 30% of his body with 27% of his body needing skin grafting. The majority of the injury involved his left hand and arm to the elbow and the small of his back.

We first meet Roberta and staff of the RGC about 3 months after the accident. The team would make the trek to Hamilton General Hospital every Tuesday so clients wouldn’t have to make the trip to Toronto. The trip didn’t seem to faze them they were always happy and relaxed even after fighting with traffic or weather. This gesture was invaluable to me as the thought of making a weekly trip to Toronto on my own with 2 kids on top of a multitude of doctor’s appointment was daunting to say the least.

Recovering from a burn is overwhelming, stressful and painful; the burn consumes your life and the life of your family. Now imagine being 3 yrs old. Roberta and her team at RCG made this period in our lives less stressful. They were always smiling, calm and relaxing. Evan quickly began to look forward to his appointments.

On our first appointment we had our pressure garments ready for us. They fitted Evan with the garments and made any necessary adjustments during the same appointment. This sounds simple but they had quite a job as Evan would squirm, fuss and sometimes just refuse, but patiently and kindly they talked Evan through the process and he would eventually get the garments on. Perhaps what I appreciated most from the RCG was that they listened to Evan and made adjustments according to his feelings and needs. The garments also took the sensitivity away from his hand and for the first time since the burn he was able to resume a somewhat normal life. The garments made it possible for him to hold utensils, ride a bike, climb a ladder and play with a rope swing.

Evan put his pressure garments through the wringer, he quickly started helping his dad and brother build a tree fort and change tires on his go cart. For the first time in months the catastrophe of the accident was starting to be put behind us. The garments stood up to it all. We did have times where Evan would put little holes in them but the team was ready every Tues to repair and patch. They came with decorative patches that Evan could pick out to decorate his garments. Evan looked forward to seeing them. If Evan had worn a garment for a while and something wasn’t quite right he just told them and it was fixed to his satisfaction no questions asked.

I always felt it takes a village to raise a child and I’m so thankful that the RCG was a part of our village during a very difficult time. They gave Evan a voice and his childhood back.

It takes a very special group of people to be able to work with burn victims day in out and always be patient and kind and I am vey thankful that the RCG came into our lives.

Heidi Sarazen

"This note is to thank you for all the care and attention you and your staff have provided me over the past year and a half since February 2008.

It has been a long road and people like yourself have really helped to light the way during some very challenging times. The revisions with your garments have been invaluable and I cannot imagine how my hand would look without the custom fitting and special extras you have been able to provide to ensure the best results.

Your understanding, support, encouragement and expertise have really made such a difference in my life moving forward I can’t thank you enough.

Please feel free to use my case as an example of all you can do and I would be happy to recommend your company to any in need.

My sincere thanks to you and your staff for the incredible service you have provided me. Roberta people like you make a difference everyday to our world."

Karen Killingbeck

"A year ago on May 12, 2008, I received burns to my arm, hand, torso, leg, and foot from boiling grease. My hand was burnt severely with third and forth degree burns to the palm and fingertips, which as a result I have lost the tips of my fingers. My arm and leg had third degree burns. After I was released from the hospital the Recovery Garment Centre was then my next step in recovery.

Upon my first visit to be measured for my new garments I was very nervous as to be expected with my injury, but Roberta and her team, Ann and Van, quickly made me feel comfortable and most importantly not alone. Their compassion and professionalism could be felt right away in what they do. The material that is used for these garments is very comfortable and in very little time you get use to wearing them. Sometimes it was not easy for me to go to Toronto to pick up my garments as I live north of the city so Roberta would have them shipped to me.

I will always be grateful for the services that I received by Recovery Garment Centre, as they not only provided me with my garments but also gave me the hope and courage to continue my healing. I would like to thank not only Roberta but her great team in their dedication and caring in helping victims like me and hope you have many more years in business."

John Flegg

"On July 23 2007 I was in an accident where I was covered head to toe with tar heated to 325. I suffered burns to 90% of my body(3rd degree to 70%). I was in Sunnybrook burn unit until Jan 7 2008. I went then to St Johns Rehab from Jan 7 2008 to Aug 21 2009, six months as an inpatient. Next is rehab at St Mary's in Kingston.
I first met Roberta at Sunnybrook. Not all of my wounds were healed, but my hands were. She measured me and made me gloves. Then at St Johns I was made knee shorts and a vest. The third fitting some months later was a full suite from the neck down. I have been wearing these outfits since.

The service from Roberta and her helpers is good, caring, friendly, and professional. When you are going through a major trauma you need all the help and friends you can get."

Claudelle Keeping

"My name is Claudelle and I’ve been with Roberta and the Recovery Garment Centre for many years. I was diagnosed hyper thyroid and after treatment my hands, lower legs and feet became swollen and deformed. Roberta and the staff create gloves and knee high toe socks for me.

They take meticulous measurements and within days my garments are crafted. These garments are necessary to control and compress my ever-changing swollen parts. The garments are strong, skillfully made and a perfect fit every single time. 

Recovery Garment Centre offers professionalism, dedication and pride in all that they do. The thought and care that’s put into their work is brilliant. I know that Recovery Garment Centre has made my life better and this incredible expansion will definitely benefit others."

Jeff Scott O.T.

"I have worked for many years with Roberta and the Recovery Garment Centre team in both acute and rehab settings and have always been very happy with the service and product. They are attentive to client needs, work well with therapists and make a good product. Their turn around time for production and revisions is great which is very important for burn care. They are also very willing to work closely with the therapists which allows for a very specialized garment for each client."

Lisa Giardino (P.T.)

"It is my privilege to write this testimonial for Roberta Harris and the Recovery Garment Centre team, who I've had the pleasure of working with for approximately four years. During this time, they have proven to be exceptional colleagues and an outstanding asset to our team.

Roberta and her team have provided our clients with pressure garments and they have provided quality service in an efficient manner. They are reliable, responsible and consistently demonstrate an admirable work ethic. Roberta is an active listener and routinely incorporates client’s or clinician’s requests into her products. She takes initiative ... and uses humour to easily establish trusting relationships. Clients are fond of Roberta’s sincerity and empathetic demeanor.

Overall, she and her team are a valued and integral part of our team."

Barbara Beloniak

I became involved with Recovery Garments in 2005 after my son Brendan was seriously injured in a cottage fire. He was 18 years old at the time and received third degree burns to over 30 percent of his body. He was airlifted to Sunnybrook Hospital and spent the next month there receiving treatment and remarkable care. It is there that we met Roberta Harris and her wonderful team from Recovery Garments.

Brendan's first garment fitting was shortly after being released from hospital. He was still extremely fragile physically and emotionally. Roberta and her team understood exactly what he was going through and treated him with compassion, kindness and respect. They made a very difficult task bearable for all of us.

Brendan wore pressure garments on both arms and hands as well as leggings and socks on both feet. He was a good patient and took his recovery seriously. He was determined to regain his physical strength and ability. As a result, his size changed greatly during the two years in garments.

Roberta and her team would always take meticulous measurements and have his garments ready in no time. Alterations were rarely needed. The team was extremely flexible and in the early days we were able to combine physio appointments at St. John's Rehab with a garment fitting, or we could see them at Sunnybrook Hospital and in later months we went to their facility. We were both always greeted with smiles and treated like family.

Brendan wore his pressure garments for two years and during that time became more and more active. The material used and the construction took all of his abuse. He resumed mountain biking, snowboarding, and attended the gym daily. Only the gloves needed an occasional minor repair. It was also good for Brendan to have a colour choice. He wore the black coloured pressure garments. It seems like a very minor thing but it made a world of difference to him to not have them look like medical equipment. He found them comfortable and they provided him a sense of security.

Burn recovery is a very difficult process for the victim and the people who love them. I feel extremely grateful to Roberta and her team for their dedication, kindness, understanding and their commitment to providing such a valuable product.

Brendan has made a full recovery and decided early on in his recovery that he would become a paramedic some day. He wanted to help people the way he was helped during this terrible period in his life. I am very proud and happy to report that he made that dream come true and is currently employed as a paramedic for Frontenac Paramedic Services in Kingston, Ontario.

Margaret Synnott

For a burn patient, knowing you will have to wear these garments for a year to a year and a half is daunting to say the least.

When I went to RGC to be measured for my garments the staff were friendly and answered my questions in a very pleasant manner and I did not feel rushed.

Going back after 3 months for a change of garments they listened carefully to what I had to say about whether the garments fit okay or were they too tight.

After wearing a garment from the waist down to the ankle, I advised them I did not need a panty type garment as my back was healed. We discussed the possibility of a thigh to ankle garment and they cheerfully complied and it was much more comfortable for me.

I found the beige ones fit in nicely with my clothes and most people did not notice them much. I was hoping for pink or blue but these did not come out until after I finished wearing them.

Even though the garments were hot at times they were a great protection for my skin.

Once I was told to wean myself off I thought I would be happy, but the garments protected the skin and without the garments it was a whole new experience.

Many thanks to staff at RGC.

Tony Ishmael

My accident happened at noon on November 14th, 2002. We were driving to Sault Ste Marie from Thunder Bay in Northern Ontario during a show and ice storm. One moment I was fine. Then the accident happened and my life flashed in front of me. I soon realized that I was trapped in the vehicle as I could neither open my seatbelt nor my door to escape and that the fire was starting to get too close for comfort. Then in seconds I realized it was up me.

The rest is history, but thanks to Almighty God, I survived.

The left side of my body and both hands were burnt. Dr. Robert Cartotto and his team at Sunnybrook's Burn Unit introduced me to Roberta Harris from The Recovery Garment Centre Inc. and her team who were there for me from day one.

Nothing was ever too much for them to do for me and no detail was ever ignored. My burn garments were unique, well made, durable and without them my scars would not have had the desired healing results. There were the total head caps, the upper bodysuits (with inserts at the back so as to apply more pressure in certain spots) then the left leg stockings and finally the gloves which were a work of art.

The memory of their patience and dedication in taking my measurements and making sure that each garment fitted just right has remained with me to date.

As a result of their hard work, my body made a great recovery and I am very proud to tell enquiring folks about the wonderful burn professionals both at Sunnybrook Hospital and at The Recovery Garment Centre Inc. in our Province of Ontario.

Most Sincerely,
Tony Ishmael

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