I came across the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons’ “A Nation in Motion” campaign while visiting my orthopaedic surgeon this fall. The campaign highlights the importance of fighting for mobility and encourages individuals to share their orthopaedic success stories.
Ask me why it’s important to fight for mobility and I’ll tell you what it feels like to do simple things that I never thought I would do again.
In 2002, I was told that I would someday need both of my hips replaced. Having been active in sports and fitness most of my life, I was in denial. Even to the point of barely being able to walk ten years later.
Struggling to take a few steps not only took its toll on me, but my wife and family as well. The pain became unbearable, as bone-on-bone allows no relief, whether standing, sitting or lying down.
My friend, a physical therapist saw my condition and recommended that I see Dr. David Whiddon, a local orthopaedic surgeon. Dr. Whiddon explained the anterior approach and I was sold on it, but perhaps mostly because I had given up on everything else.
He performed each hip replacement eight days apart. I was a little skeptical because I wasn’t sure that at my age and condition that I could recover quickly enough from one surgery to be ready for another.
However, my doubts and concerns were quickly erased as, in no time, I was bearing nearly 100 percent of my weight on my new hip. The second surgery came along and outside of temporary muscle and surgical area soreness, I was completely pain-free. Something I could have never imagined possible.
Two weeks after the surgeries I was back in the gym working out. I started very lightly, but my strength, stability, endurance and flexibility began to develop rapidly. As a former strength coach, I had a slight advantage in knowing how to work these areas, but I was astonished at how easy and effective it was.
I do not know the ins and outs of the technology and I won’t be entering squat and dead lift contests, but I have a life again. I can walk. I can tie my shoes. I can mow the lawn. I can carry out the garbage. I can stand, sit, walk, pick something up from the floor, shower and shave, pain-free. It is a miracle, and I will tell anybody my story in the hopes that they could benefit in the same way.
Become inspired. Fight for your mobility. If you decide to have orthopaedic care, share your story with others on ANationInMotion.org.
Marty Mitchell lives in Camp Hill, Pa.
By Marty Mitchell original article from