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Read what people are saying about their life-changing experiences and the expert care they received at Novant Health Prince William Medical Center's Orthopedic & Spine Center.
Getting His Life Back
MAKOplasty® is getting Jim Brandt back into the game.
Jim Brandt always liked to be active. A basketball player in high school and college, Brandt, like many other former student athletes, had accumulated some injuries, but that didn’t slow him down. At 40, he was participating in a few short triathlons and still playing some recreational basketball when his orthopedic surgeon, W. Bartley Hosick, MD, gave him a sobering warning.
“I’d had numerous procedures with scopes on both my knees,” says Brandt. “Dr. Hosick said to me there was no more cartilage to take out. I was down to bone-on-bone in part of my knee. He told me that the friction in the knee joint was really going to damage my knee, and that I was going to need a knee replacement if I didn’t cut down on my activities.”
Brandt listened to his doctor’s advice and took up swimming. But the damage to his knees was catching up to him anyway. “By last year,” he says, “normal day-to-day activities such as walking would be painful and cause my knee to balloon.”
“Then this past fall,” he says, “I was just walking the dog, and my knee locked up and put me down on the ground.” He was limping and waking up in pain at night, “like a knife going through my knee. It got to the point,” says Brandt, “where my quality of life was seriously being affected.”
All other treatment approaches were no longer working and Brandt thought he’d be facing a total knee replacement before his 50th birthday. “Then Dr. Hosick talked with me about MAKOplasty,” says Brandt.
Brandt had the procedure early in the spring. He spent only one night in the hospital and he was already putting weight on the knee, using crutches, when he left the next day. “The stay at Prince William Medical Center was great and the treatment was fantastic” he says.
Within a few days of returning home he transitioned to a cane, which he only needed one day. The recovery required Brandt to do a daily routine of exercises focused on restoring strength to muscles and range of motion to the knee—all of which had declined in the months before the surgery. But the pain he had been experiencing before the surgery was gone and he was back at work in 10 days.
“Everything Dr. Hosick told me about has played out,” says Brandt. Brandt’s experience with his partial knee replacement has been so positive that he is considering doing his other knee sooner rather than waiting until it gets worse. “I don’t want my right knee to get as bad as my left knee was,” says Brandt. “I’m getting back to where I want to be.”
Back on Her Feet Again
Back surgery was the last thing on Peggie Kosmicki's mind last fall.
"Like most people, I'd had the occasional backache in my life, but nothing serious," she says.
Then suddenly, late in the fall, she experienced severe back pain. "I had extreme pain for about three weeks," she says, "and I also had extreme numbness down my leg."
While the pain receded, the numbness remained and Mrs. Kosmicki was referred to neurosurgeon and spine care specialist Mudit Sharma, MD. The diagnosis? Degenerative arthritis resulting in herniated discs and misaligned vertebrae. She was at risk of permanent nerve damage. Surgery was recommended.
"Dr. Sharma inspired great confidence," says Mrs. Kosmicki. "He was very clear about explaining what was to be done. He really calmed any apprehensions I might have had."
Dr. Sharma performed a minimally invasive surgery on Mrs. Kosmicki, which involved a lumbar fusion and realignment of the vertebrae. "I have three little incisions on each side where the fusion took place," says Mrs. Kosmicki. "I had the surgery on Friday and I was out of the hospital on Sunday." Physical therapy followed the surgery to help Mrs. Kosmicki recover and learn good back-health habits and she anticipates being able to return to enjoying all her customary activities.
Throughout the entire process, from diagnosis through recovery, she says, "My care has been absolutely excellent." She was so pleased with the nursing care during her hospital stay that she sent the staff a thank you letter. "And my physical therapists are terrific, too," she adds.
"No one wants to have to go through something like this," she comments. "But if I had to have something like this happen, it could not have been a better experience."