As she started to develop arthritis, Sue, a 67-year-old Bethel Park resident, began taking regular walks in South Park with her daughter Jessica, an X-ray technician at the UPMC South Hills and UPMC West Mifflin outpatient offices. Sue wanted to ward off the effects of the arthritis, but it still crept in. She needed to have a total right knee replacement in February 2014.
Soon after surgery, Sue began outpatient physical therapy at the South Hills location of UPMC Centers for Rehab Services. There she met her physical therapist Dave, who would see her through four different knee surgery recoveries.
“Dave and I just connected,” recalls Sue. “He knew what I needed to get back on my feet and I trusted him. I asked for him each time I had to come back."
"The CRS South Hills location was close to home, but it’s Dave who kept me coming back,” says Sue. “He had me do range of motion exercises on the exercise bike, leg presses, and various stretches. I also had to practice walking on stairs.”
Dave also gave Sue a list of exercises to do at home so that she could continue to heal and regain her mobility. She was determined to walk in the Arthritis Foundation’s 2016 Jingle Bell Run in Pittsburgh. With patience and determination, she was able to complete the 5K walk alongside her daughter.
“Jessica told me that she was having trouble keeping up with me,” says a surprised Sue. “She actually said that I was inspiring her to keep moving instead of the other way around.”
Now that Sue has successfully completed that 5K, she has set her sights a little higher, literally. She plans to climb to the top of both Notre Dame Cathedral and the Arc de Triomphe on an upcoming vacation to Paris.
“I want to see those gargoyles up close, so I’m really thankful that I’ll now be able to climb all those stairs!”