Climbing High After Hip Surgery

14-Sep-2016

Wilson resident Jane Baldwin has always been an avid hiker and runner, and an ambitious one at that. Her preferred runs include events like a 17-mile mountain race that features over 5,300 feet of elevation gain. But life can take a toll, and a few years ago, the worn cartilage in her hip made walking, not to mention hiking or running, painful. She managed to postpone the inevitable hip replacement surgery by switching to other sports and getting cortisone shots.

But when a last-minute chance came to trek in Nepal, Jane faced a difficult choice: get another cortisone shot (and possibly have it wear off) or have surgery with less than three months to prepare for her trip. After consulting with Dr. Gus Goetz, she opted for surgery at St. John’s Peak Joint Replacement Center.

As soon as she awoke from anesthesia, she could tell that she had less pain than she had experienced in years. She started physical therapy immediately, working hard with a goal in mind. While her trekking companions were a little skeptical about her ability to hike in the extreme conditions, Jane proved to be one of the strongest members of the group. On day two, her confidence in her new hip was bolstered when she completed 11 kilometers with 2,000 feet of elevation gain and loss.

Not only that, but her hip was pain free, and she was able to cross an item off her bucket list—a hike through the Himalayas. She hopes to tackle Africa or India next.

EVERY PATIENT HAS A STORY. For more #ICanAgain stories and videos, visit tetonhospital.org/stories.