Hello, my name is Randy and my Rothman story actually started about two and a half years ago. I was experiencing extreme pain in my right knee, to the point where I required a cane in order to get around. It seems years of being a shot putter in my youth and a career as a truck driver had taken its toll. I was told that although I had little or no meniscus and was bone on bone in my right knee, at the age of 55 I was too young to undergo a total knee replacement.
At that point I turned to Dr. Eric Smith and Rothman Orthopaedic Institute for a second opinion. Dr. Smith's feeling was even I had been 25 that knee needed to be replaced and the left one was only a few years behind it. Because of some earlier procedures and some personal plans the surgery was put off for 6 months. This would give me time to strengthen my leg and be better ready for the surgery. I did this by spending as much time as I could working out; I discovered the world of cycling. In October, 2012 I had a total right knee replacement at Rothman Orthopaedic Institute in Riddle Memorial Hospital.
Now, fast forward two years and over 5000 road cycling miles later, it was now January of 2015 and this time the left knee has gone. Same situation- not much meniscus left, bone on bone. This time there was no second opinion needed; I returned to Dr. Smith fully aware of what he was most likely going to tell me.
My total left knee replacement was scheduled for January 26, 2015. By cycling either outdoors or indoors, depending on the weather, I was in good shape to go through the surgery again. Also, having been through it once I knew what to expect and that made everything much easier. The better shape you are in at the time of your surgery, then the better the recovery and rehab experience will be. It's still not easy but will definitely be better. In both cases, within three weeks I was in rehab and within five weeks I was slowly starting to turn the pedals on a bicycle again. I was released from rehab on April 16, 2015 and as of today, May 5, 2015, I have logged 50 miles on my trainer and another 200 miles on the road. No pain in either knee, all pleasure.
I gradually worked my way up to where I am now riding 20 miles a day, five days a week, and as I said, pain free. I plan on spending the rest of the summer building up my knee and improving on my cycling. My ultimate goal is to spend the next three years training for the adventure of a lifetime. On April 15th of 2018 I intend to leave my home in Springfield on a cycling trip to Key West, FL. and back. A round trip of 3,965 miles spread over 60 days. I want people to see that joint replacement is not the end but the beginning of getting your life back. With the help of the good doctors and staff at Rothman there is no reason to spend the rest of your life remembering what it was like not to have pain when you can continue on with your life pain-free for many years to come. I will never be able to thank everyone who was involved enough for giving me my life back. Thank you Dr. Smith and the Rothman Orthopaedic Institute.