Friendships are invaluable. I am certainly grateful to my two close friends who recognized something was wrong one day in the summer of 2020. They observed me walking and told me that "my walk was off." My friends, along with my rowing coach, encouraged me to get it checked out.
Prior to that moment, I had always been active in biking, swimming and competing in triathlons. Along the way, I tore my ACL on separate occasions. That is how I first met Dr. Samuel Goldstein at Andrews Sports Medicine. He repaired my ACL with surgery each time.
As follow up to my friends concern, I scheduled an appointment with Dr. Goldstein at Andrews Sports Medicine's Trussville clinic location. Dr. Goldstein confirmed that I needed to have a total knee replacement. Because Dr. Goldstein did not perform total knee replacements anymore, he and his PA, Jenny Degnan, recommended I see Dr. Marcus Rothermich, another orthopaedic surgeon in the Andrews group who also treats patients in Trussville.
During my initial appointment with Dr. Rothermich, he reviewed my x-rays and explained to me that both knees were in need of a total knee replacement. I inquired about having both knees done at the same time. However, Dr. Rothermich strongly recommend not having surgery on both knees at the same time. I scheduled surgery for my right knee, which was worse. Then seven weeks later, I had surgery on my left knee.
After working hard rehabbing with Beth Pierpoint and her crew at ATI Physical Therapy-Trussville, I continued my rehab exercises at home. It was extremely important that I reach my goals of getting back to doing what I love.
It’s now been six months and I am pleased to announce that I am officially back to rowing. On my first day back in the water, I was able to get in the boat from the dock, which surprised my coach. I did have help carrying the boat to and away from the dock. It was a successful day and I did not turn the boat over which is easy to do on a windy day.
I am so grateful to Dr. Rothermich and his staff, Courtney Welch as well as to my close friends for their encouragement. In addition, the joint camp at St. Vincent’s Hospital was so informative and helpful in knowing what to expect.
Today, I now find myself being more observant of others walking since my joint replacement experience.