En­cour­ag­ing oth­ers

Stanstead Journal - - NEWS -

re­place­ment surgery.

The class is a time for peo­ple, some who have al­ready been sched­uled for surgery and oth­ers who are only con­tem­plat­ing it, to learn more about joint re­place­ment surgery and what to ex­pect.

“Joint Re­place­ment Class is a won­der­ful op­por­tu­nity to learn about the process in­volved in get­ting a to­tal joint re­placed,” Maryjane Man­fredi said. “All of the staff in­volved in the pro­ce­dure will take you through each step, from the ini­tial eval­u­a­tion with the sur­geon through the en­tire re­cov­ery. The class is open to those who have al­ready con­sulted with a physi­cian re­gard­ing to­tal joint re­place­ment as well as those who are con­tem­plat­ing their op­tions and want to learn more about this op­por­tu­nity. Mem­bers of the public are wel­come and en­cour­aged. How­ever, due to space con­cerns we do en­cour­age you to call our of­fice and reg­is­ter.” Maryjane is the prac­tice man­ager for North Coun­try Or­thopaedics.

Dr. Glen Neale, the full-time Or­thopaedic sur­geon at North Coun­try Or­thopaedics in Newport, per­forms the joint re­place­ment surg­eries. Also on staff in the prac­tice is Dr. Richard James, part­time Sports Medicine physi­cian who of­ten refers pa­tients to Dr. Neale for surgery and works very closely with our team to col­lab­o­rate with post-op­er­a­tive pa­tients’ treat­ment plans. Dr. James also spe­cial­izes in ma­jor joint in­jec­tions (shoul­der, hip and knee) done un­der ul­tra­sound guid­ance. Norm Dupuis, an Or­thopaedic Physi­cian As­sis­tant, rou­tinely sees pa­tients in the prac­tice and as­sists Dr. Neale in surgery.

Fast for­ward to March 8, 2012, about two years af­ter Richard’s surgery. He was back in the same meet­ing room at the hospi­tal, and he was again lis­ten­ing to the hospi­tal, and he was again lis­ten­ing to a very sim­i­lar talk about joint re­place­ment surgery with a group of other peo­ple. No, his joint re­place­ments hadn’t gone bad, nor did he need any other joints re­placed. He was there to en­cour­age other joint re­place­ment can­di­dates, many who were ner­vous about un­der­go­ing the surgery. And far from be­ing an­gry about be­ing at this class, he was happy and down­right hu­mor­ous as he told oth­ers about his ex­pe­ri­ence.

“I was just so thrilled I had the surgery done,” Richard said. How­ever, he un­der­stands their re­luc­tance to have the surgery. “I was told when I was 43 I needed knee re­place­ment surgery, but I just wasn’t ready to have it done yet.”

He tried just about ev­ery pro­ce­dure to avoid hav­ing the surgery, in­clud­ing tak­ing a co­pi­ous amount of over-the-counter painkillers, and be­ing in­jected with steroids. “By the time I was 63 I could barely walk. If I walked 100 yards I was in ex­cru­ci­at­ing pain.” The pain made it dif­fi­cult for him to work at his job as a cur­rier for the Pas­sump­sic Sav­ings Bank.

Along with his hu­mor and per­sonal ex­pe­ri­ence re­lat­ing to the surgery, he didn’t beat around the push about the pro­ce­dure and the mod­er­ate pain he had to en­dure for a time af­ter the op­er­a­tion. How­ever, he said that pain was noth­ing com­pared to the pain he’d felt for years lead­ing up to the surgery. And the pain dis­ap­peared soon af­ter un­der­go­ing the pro­ce­dure.

“I felt so good af­ter the surgery I de­cided to re­tire from work be­cause I could do things I hadn’t been able to do in 15 years,” Richard said. He also went out and bought him­self a mo­tor­cy­cle.”

Peo­ple in­ter­ested in know­ing more about joint re­place­ment, or in at­tend­ing the class, please con­tact North Coun­try Or­thopaedics at 802-334-4175.

North Coun­try Or­thopaedics will soon be wel­com­ing a sec­ond or­thopaedic sur­geon. Dr. Thomas Var­ney will be join­ing Dr. Neale and Dr. James in May.

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