As we get older, pain and discomfort can slow us down and keep us from doing the things we want to do. But now there is hope for those who chose to do something abou that pain. Orthopedic surgery patients like Mary Skrocki and Chuck Bott are great examples of how a replacement procedure can get you back to where you want to be pain-free.
Mary Skrocki is a senior olympic athlete and constantly on the go. With several triathalons under her belt, she decided to have hip replacement surgery at Munson Medical Center in Traverse City so she could keep on going after pain in her hips was slowing her down.
"I was lunging when I walked, I was uncomfortable all the time and I just kept putting it off until finally I said 'OK you have to do this'...otherwise I knew I'd continue to be chronically disabled," Skrocki said.
Chuck Bott is another orthopedic surgery patient, as well as an official for student athletic games. A degenerative joint disease was causing the pain and it turned out Chuck needed a knee replacement, and says the way he feels after surgery is a night and day difference from the pain he felt before.
"I couldn't be out there 100% and so it wasn't fair to the kids who work hard to play the game if I wasn't able to officiate it at their level," Bott said.
A few months after surgery, Chuck is out running and biking and counting down the days until he can be back at the games.
"If there's any doubt don't hesitate. I'm a lot happier today than I was 8 weeks ago," Bott said.
Doctor Nathan March has seen lots of patients like Chuck and Mary and says most people don't go see their doctor soon enough, and end up being in pain for far too long.
"Typically people are always waiting until the last minute to get their hip replaced...almost every patient afterwards says 'geez why did I wait so long?',"
Mary is currently training for the Senior Olympics and Chuck is on track to be back officiating athletic events this Fall. If you are ready to explore orthopedic surgery as a way to get back to activity in your life, you should talk with your primary care physician.