Janet Rushmore accepted her pain and limping as inevitable signs of aging. However, she soon noticed that she also was having difficulty with her normal activities, such as gardening, biking, dancing, hiking, showing houses for her job as a realtor, and keeping up with her seven grandchildren.
“I still believed that exercise, physical therapy, or injections would magically make it all better, but none of it did,” she says.
After hearing from many sources about Anthony M. DiGioia, MD, of Renaissance Orthopaedics and the Bone and Joint Center at UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital, Ms. Rushmore made an appointment to learn more about surgical options.
When she met the orthopaedic team, their genuine friendliness reminded her of “cast members at Disney’s Magic Kingdom. Everyone was so pleasant, they made me feel like I was the only patient that showed up!”
A ‘New Leg’ on Life
With her supportive friends and family, known as “coaches” in the program, Ms. Rushmore decided to try to get a “new leg” on life, literally and figuratively.
Following her left total hip surgery, Ms. Rushmore found it took both physical and mental effort to begin to restore her mobility. She recalls being brave the first day and miserable the second day, but on the third day she was walking up and down a flight of stairs in the hospital, and went home with the assistance of just a cane.
Despite the soreness, she picked up and continued her busy life. At the end of her first recovery week, she had the strength to:
- Attend a party on Saturday.
- Attend church on Sunday.
- Practice driving in the parking lot.
Continuing her recovery with visits to her physical therapists, Ms. Rushmore regained the tools to perform everyday activities, such as:
One month later, when she went back for her follow-up visit with Dr. DiGioia, she had been to the theater, out to restaurants, had attended dinner parties, visited the zoo, and had even shown a few houses to potential buyers.
Feeling Young, Again
To her surprise, Ms. Rushmore feels young again. Two goals she set for her recovery were to golf and wear high heels, but “not at the same time, of course!”
Exactly two months after her surgery, she had a terrific time golfing. Nine weeks later, she danced in her four-inch high heels at a wedding.
“It sure felt strange, but wonderful to be back in the game again,” she says.
Tips for Success
Ms. Rushmore recommends these helpful tips for a successful recovery:
- Take pain medications when offered.
- Exercise prior to surgery to help afterward.
- Know that the process is painful, but never unbearable.
“Thanks to ‘Team DiGioia,’ my dream to feel young again has come true,” she concludes.
Note: This patient's treatment and results may not be representative of all similar cases.