Now We're Rolling

As Amanda swung her leg over the three-wheeled bicycle, a present from her husband, her five-year-old daughter’s eyes lit up in amazement.

“She was just beside herself as we were riding up and down the street together, because I had never been able to do that before,” Amanda said.

It was a special moment that happened mere weeks after Amanda had her left knee replaced by Mark D’Onofrio, M.D., an orthopedic surgeon at Fairfield Medical Center. Less than four months later, Amanda returned to Dr. D’Onofrio to have her other knee replaced.

“I thought, if I feel this good after the first knee replacement, I might be able to fly after the second,” Amanda said with a laugh.

Total knee replacement surgery is one of many orthopedic procedures available at FMC. This type of surgery is considered for patients whose knee joints have been damaged by progressive arthritis, trauma or other destructive diseases of the joint.

During a knee replacement, the damaged part of the bone is removed and the surface of the bone is shaped to hold a metal or plastic artificial joint.

Amanda learned she was a prime candidate for knee replacement surgery due to a birth defect called congenital hip dislocation. The condition can create pain in the person’s hips, back and knees. As Amanda grew older, the pain worsened and started to impact her job and daily life.

“I went to work every day, but when I came home, I had nothing left to give,” said Amanda, who often worked 13-hour days. “I started using a cane, but my legs still hurt.”

A self-professed workaholic, Amanda said it took a lot of convincing from her husband to have the surgery, as she knew it meant she would have to take time off work. She also didn’t like the idea of going under the knife.

“It’s a scary thing – they’re basically putting metal where your bones are,” she said. “But the staff at Fairfield Medical Center and Dr. D’Onofrio were wonderful. They prepared me for what was going to happen, and they convinced me that it was going to change my life.”

Amanda said one FMC staff member – orthopedic discharge planner Lindsey Klaameyer – even went above and beyond to ensure she had the resources she needed to make a full recovery at home.

“I was joking that I would love to have a hospital bed at home, and she looked into it for me,” Amanda said. “She made all the phone calls and the next day, she told me I was going to get the bed and that it would be covered by my insurance.”

Since her surgeries, Amanda said she feels like a new person, especially when it comes
to spending time with her kids.

“I can do so much more now,” she said. “I could never ride a bike or climb the stairs to go up to my children’s bedrooms. We can go to the waterpark and the zoo. It’s like a whole new life.”

As just one of eight Advanced Care Centers in the U.S., FMC’s Orthopedic Unit has been used as a model for hospitals nationwide.

To learn more about how you can start moving better again, or to schedule a tour of the Orthopedic Unit, call 740-687-8649.

Tags: Orthopedic, Joint, Knee, Ortho,