Josephine, 63, doesn’t stay still for very long. “I’m not the kind of person who likes to just sit in the corner of the house,” Josephine jokes.
An avid hiker, walker, and traveler, Josephine was dismayed when rheumatoid arthritis in her left knee began hampering her ability to do some of her favorite activities. At first, Josephine tried to manage the pain with prescription medication. She continued with her daily walks, but gradually they became more difficult. She also had developed a pronounced limp, and the pain soon spread to her hip and back.
Josephine, who admits she enjoys high heels and “pretty things,” says the pain affected how she felt about her appearance. “When you’re limping, no matter how beautiful your dress is, you don’t feel pretty.” And Josephine wasn’t the only one suffering. “My family would see the way I was limping, and could tell that I was in pain. It made them feel bad, too,” she says.
When Josephine heard that her friend’s husband had recently had both knees successfully replaced, she decided to visit his physician, Dr. Pierce Scranton, to discuss her options with him. “When I met with him I had a very confident feeling, so I decided to go ahead and have the surgery right away,” she says.
In September 2006, Josephine’s doctor replaced her left knee with the Sigma® high-flex Rotating Platform Knee. This knee implant is unique, because it is designed to accommodate the normal rotation of the knee that occurs during deep bending and other regular activities.
Following the surgery, Josephine says her recovery period was quick and relatively pain-free. “Within two weeks, I was walking well and sleeping without pain,” she says.
After two months of physical therapy, Josephine was soon able to return to some of her favorite activities. Today, she says she has resumed her daily walks, regular hikes, and wearing high heels—as long as they’re not too high. “At my daughter’s wedding, my husband and I were able to dance, which was wonderful,” she says. “Now when I go out to a party, I feel beautiful!”
Recently, Josephine took a month-long trip to China and Hong Kong—using a ticket she had purchased for a trip that she had to cancel the previous year due to knee pain. “I hiked around the Ji Zu Shan (Yunnan) Mountain in the North of China. It was a dream come true for me.”
Josephine says she is deeply grateful to her doctor for performing the surgery. “I feel like I have my life back. It means so much to me to feel normal again,” she says.
Josephine’s advice to others who are considering knee replacement surgery? “You should do it, but make sure you find the right doctor. You should also make sure you do your exercises, particularly the ones immediately following surgery, because this will help you recover more quickly. I’m so happy I had the surgery.”
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IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION
As with any medical treatment, individual results may vary. Only an orthopaedic surgeon can determine whether an orthopaedic implant is an appropriate course of treatment. There are potential risks, and recovery takes time. The performance of the new joint depends on weight, activity level, age, and other factors.
Last Updated: 06/11/2009