Over the years, Diane H. lived with ever-increasing pain in her knees due to osteoarthritis, a common degenerative joint condition. Even her joint structure was affected by the condition, leading to bowing in both of her knees. Last year, an acquaintance recommended joint replacement specialist Dr. Edward Westerheide and his use of the Conformis procedure to Diane.
“I met with Dr. Westerheide to make sure it was a good fit, that I was a good candidate for the surgeries, and that he and I connected on a patient-and-physician level,” recalled Diane. “We did, it was, and we then set things in motion based upon my work schedule.”
With Diane’s diagnosis and Dr. Westerheide’s specialized expertise, they moved forward with a treatment plan that included replacing both knees using the latest in customized knee replacement technology from Conformis.
“I was quite impressed with Dr. Westerheide’s explanation, and we both felt I had the greatest likelihood of success with the Conformis procedure. I appreciated that each implementation would be designed uniquely for each of my knees. It made more sense than pulling one of the hundreds available off the shelf and expecting my body to then acclimate itself to that hardware,” said Diane. “It seemed better for me—considering the design, implementation, the surgery itself, the recovery time, and long-term benefits—to go ahead and have the Conformis procedure.”
Diane was scheduled to have her first of two procedures in May, but when COVID-19 hit Ohio, plans had to be slightly altered.
“My surgery was postponed to June 23 as a same-day surgery. I was hesitant. Working in healthcare, knowing of people who had [traditional] knee surgery, I couldn’t imagine how this could be done outpatient, returning home the same day,” Diane explained. “However, with faith in Dr. Westerheide, I decided that if he recommends this is what’s best, then that’s what I need to do.”
After undergoing her first Conformis knee replacement for her right knee in June at Northpointe Surgical Suites in Zanesville, Diane was back home by 5:00 p.m. that day. After 17 days, she was able to drive again, and in less than three weeks, she was back working at the office. With her work-related responsibilities as a healthcare professional, Diane’s second Conformis knee replacement was scheduled for October.
“I was so pleased when I finished with my left knee surgery, scooted down off the bed in the recovery room, stood up, took a couple of steps, and realized my legs were the same length,” said Diane. “It was just joyous, it really was. I have not had any notable problems. I had physical therapy at home for a couple of weeks. Upon returning to work, I continued with outpatient therapy. I’d just leave my office, walk over to the therapy gym, and walk back. It was great.”
Eleven days after her second surgery, Diane was driving, and in less than three weeks, she was back in the office.
“My stamina has increased to where it was years ago because I’m not in pain. I’m not taking any pain medication whatsoever. Dr. Westerheide and his support staff—Julie Renner, physician assistant, and Valerie, medical assistant, as well as the front office staff—have truly been so helpful. I was so pleased with the services that I received and certainly the outcome. It really was a phenomenal experience and remains so,” Diane said.
“Because of my healthcare background, I requested more information than some others would have wanted or needed,” Diane added. “They were very, very thorough. Questions were always responded to promptly. That speaks volumes as far as I’m concerned.”
Now, at 63, Diane can climb steps with ease, and she can carry heavier items that she’d needed a cart or other assistance with before her procedures. She’s happily looking forward to enjoying nights out and participating in more activities once COVID-19 passes.
“I have been able to walk more, and once we kick COVID to the rearview mirror, I would like to go white water rafting again and hot-air ballooning—do some of those things I had been able to do on vacation in the distant past,” said Diane.
If you’re experiencing chronic knee pain, Dr. Westerheide has the extensive experience and expertise to help you too. Call (740) 788-9220 or request an appointment online for a consultation with Dr. Westerheide and find out if you’re a good candidate for Conformis custom knee replacement surgery.