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Life Changing Is ... A New Step Forward

Bill M., Ankle Surgery

After having both of his knees replaced, Bill was struggling with severe pain in a different area: his left ankle.

Bill began to deal with arthritis in the joint in his mid-50s. Over the years, the pain continued to get worse. He had to use a walker to move around his house.

"I could hardly get around," Bill says. "I walked like on the side of my foot. That's how bad the arthritis in the ankle was.

“It was really limited. I mean, about every step I took, I was in pain. And I mean pretty good pain."

Bill tried pain medication, but it didn't work. One surgeon suggested a procedure that could ease his pain but would restrict his mobility, which Bill didn't want to do.

Then, he received a referral from his podiatrist, Thomas Albright, DPM, to Zachary Ritter, DPM, chief of Foot and Ankle Surgery at UPMC in North Central Pa.

"He said, 'I can fix your ankle,'" Bill says. "I said, 'That's good news to me.'"

Dr. Ritter performed two procedures on Bill's ankle, and he went home the same day each time. The first surgery addressed the arthritis in the ankle. The second added hardware to stabilize the joint and make it easier for Bill to get around without pain.

Bill felt the effects almost right away.

"Since he did it, I had no pain, and I mean that," he says. "No pain from the beginning of the operation, and they did it in two sessions, to the end. I mean, it was just great. (Dr. Ritter) is fantastic. And I told him that."

After using a scooter for the first six weeks after his second operation, Bill can get around better now. He still uses a cane, but he's able to walk without pain.

"His energy level's probably about the same," says Donna Moyer, Bill's wife. "He does not have the pain that he had before. That's a definite. There's no doubt about that at all."

In addition to being happy with the surgery, Bill and Donna say they appreciate how the entire team at UPMC Specialty Care in Lewisburg treated them. They said Dr. Ritter's staff made sure to schedule appointments at convenient times and made the experience easier.

"I can't say anything bad about it," Bill says. "I would recommend from my standpoint that anybody has severe ankle pain to go see Dr. Ritter and get it done."

At UPMC, Life Changing Medicine means giving our patients a chance at a healthier life.

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