Yvonne and Steve know all about orthopedic surgery. Between the two of them, they’ve had four joint replacement surgeries in three years – three knee surgeries and one hip repair. Nicholas Weiss, MD, of St. Croix Orthopaedics, performed all four surgeries at Fairview Lakes Medical Center in Wyoming.
I’ve been healthy all my life. Before my knee replacements, I had never had surgery or any serious health conditions. I exercised and was an avid swimmer for 17 years. I take vitamins and try to eat right. I do, however, have a family history of arthritis.
I first noticed problems with my knees shortly before we moved into our house in 2008. Moving was a lot of work—a lot of going up and down stairs. My knee was bad and kept getting steadily worse over the next couple of years. My family physician at the Fairview Clinic in Chisago City referred me to Dr. Weiss. First, I had cortisone shots and when the injections no longer helped, I knew it was time to have the surgery—but I still put it off!
Then, I woke up one morning and couldn’t put my heel down without excruciating pain. I knew it was time to have the surgery. We rushed to see Dr. Weiss and his staff made every effort to get me in for surgery as soon as they could. Never having had surgery before, I was apprehensive but it went really, really good.
I had surgery on a Thursday and went home on Sunday. After having rehabilitation therapy for two days a week for a couple of weeks, I was good as new.
I vowed not to wait so long to do my second knee, and I didn’t. The second knee replacement went even better than the first, because I knew what to expect. With the second knee, I had the surgery on Thursday and went home on Saturday. I was back at work in two weeks.
We have so much faith in Dr. Weiss that my husband also went to him for his joint replacement surgeries – a hip and a knee – all performed in the past two years. Dr. Weiss is very professional and his bedside manner is unbelievable. He’s so kind, and he doesn’t push anything. After he looked at my X-rays, I asked him when I would be having the surgery. He said, “I won’t tell you – you’ll tell me,” and he was right. When you can’t walk anymore without pain, then it’s time.
Going into the surgery, I had a history of health problems. As a child, I was hit by a car. The injury resulted in one of my legs being shorter than the other one, and caused me to walk with limp for most of my life. I also have heart problems, diabetes and have had two surgeries for colon cancer.
Despite all of these complicating factors, my joint replacement surgeries for my knee and hip, with Dr. Weiss went very smoothly. I have a lot of respect for Dr. Weiss.
My left knee was arthritic, and I had torn my meniscus. The knee kept getting worse. First we tried arthroscopic surgery, but the knee was a lot worse than what was thought. When shots didn’t work, the only alternative was knee replacement. I had the surgery done in March 2012. I was released from the hospital after two days, and elected to go to recover at a nearby rehabilitation center where I stayed for about 10 days until I was able to bend my knee.
I decided to have my hip replaced in December 2012. I’d been limping for years and could hear the hip going in and out. The hip surgery went so well that I recovered at home using a walker for a day and a cane for one day. Within three days of the surgery I was only acetaminophen for pain and was back driving in just two weeks.
My hip is 100 percent! I don’t limp anymore because during surgery, they corrected the limp-length differences. I haven’t been able to walk like this in years. My back and sciatic pain are gone. If I had it to do over again, I would do it in a heartbeat.
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