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Avon Resident Proclaims Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Ross Henshaw “Gave Me Back My Life” After Second Total Shoulder Replacement Surgery

Thursday, December 29, 2011 - Danbury, CT

Ross Henshaw, M.D.

Ross Henshaw, M.D.
Medical Director, Advanced Sports Medicine Program
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Usually this time of year Mike Gould of Avon, Connecticut looks forward to chopping wood, two cords at a time. This year, however, he had to delegate the wood chopping, because he is fiercely committed to a daily physical therapy regimen following his second total shoulder replacement surgery at Danbury Hospital’s Center for Advanced Orthopedics and Spine Care.

A physically active sixty-two-year-old Marine Corps veteran, Mike was having severe pain in his left shoulder. “I couldn’t sleep for more than three to four hours a night because of a grinding pain in my shoulder. I would get tired at work the next day from tossing and turning and lack of sleep,” said Mike. “Over-the-counter medications weren’t working, and that’s when I knew it was time to see an orthopedic surgeon.”

First Total Shoulder Replacement Surgery

Mike wasn’t a stranger to total shoulder replacement (TSR) surgery. He already had his left shoulder done in December 2009 at a New York hospital. However, because his insurance provider changed, he wasn’t able to return to his former orthopedic surgeon. That led Mike and his wife, Joan, to conduct an extensive search to find the right orthopedic surgeon who specialized in TSR surgery.

“After my first office consultation with orthopedic surgeon Dr. Ross Henshaw, I knew he was going to be my orthopedic surgeon,” said Mike. “He was easy to talk to, friendly, and at the same time, professional. He explained everything I needed to know, described the type of implant he would use and why, and that it would be the same, if not better than the first one.”

“Mike’s test results revealed that he had a degenerative joint disease called osteoarthritis. The most common type of arthritis is osteoarthritis or degenerative joint disease,” said Dr. Henshaw, Director of Sports Medicine at Danbury Hospital. “Osteoarthritis is also known as the ‘wear-and-tear arthritis’ since the cartilage simply wears out. When cartilage wears away, bone rubs on bone causing severe pain and disability.”

Second Total Shoulder Replacement Surgery

On October 18, 2011, Dr. Henshaw performed Mike’s second TSR surgery, on his right shoulder. “This surgery was much more tolerable than my first one, because they used a nerve block that worked wonders and I never felt sick,” noted Mike. “Because of Danbury Hospital’s pain management protocols, it led to minimal post-op pain,” he continued. When I woke up after the surgery, I felt like I had just woken up from a sound and peaceful sleep.”

“Another advantage this time was that I didn’t have to go to the intensive care unit (ICU) after surgery,” said Mike. “After my first shoulder replacement surgery it was mandatory for patients with stents to be admitted to the ICU for at least one day,” said Mike. “That’s an extra step that’s not only costly; it simply wasn’t necessary.”

Patient Centered Care, Comfort and Convenience

“From the moment I walked into The Duracell Center for Ambulatory Surgery at Danbury Hospital, every staff person I came in contact with from the volunteer greeter, patient registration, pre-op, post-op, nurses and housekeeping; everyone was focused on serving my needs,” said Mike, adding, “It felt more like being at a hotel rather than in a hospital."

“After my TSR surgery at Danbury Hospital, I was lucky to have a private room at the Joint Replacement/Spine Center on 12 Tower,” Mike noted. “Another huge plus was the fact that my wife was able to stay with me so she didn’t have to drive back and forth every day. I had my wife and my nurses helping me; it just couldn’t get any better than that.”

After a three day inpatient stay and passing his physical therapy regimen with flying colors, Mike was discharged and went home to Avon fully equipped with outpatient physical therapy instructions that he continues to do religiously.

The Journey to a Full Recovery

Today, Mike is happy to be back at work at The Church of St. Ann in Avon where he is the building and grounds supervisor. After three weeks of light duty at work, he is back to feeling 80 percent and totally optimistic that within the next four to six months he will be at 100 percent. “My progress has surpassed Dr. Henshaw’s expectations,” said Mike. “The key - do your homework – keep active and be disciplined about your outpatient physical therapy and continue your daily exercise routine at home.”

“I look forward to participating in my favorite hobbies: hunting, fishing and kayaking,” added Mike. “If I had a third shoulder, I would certainly come back to Danbury Hospital! Dr. Henshaw gave me back my life,” he proclaimed.

For more information about advanced orthopedic care at Western Connecticut Health Network, go to

About Western Connecticut Health Network

Western Connecticut Health Network is a patient-centered health care organization established in 2010 by two nationally recognized hospitals, Danbury Hospital, New Milford Hospital and their affiliated organizations, to provide the highest level of care to patients throughout Western Connecticut and adjacent New York. In addition to the two hospitals, other network affiliates include:

  • An integrated physician practice with primary and specialty care expertise
  • An agency for home care and community health services
  • A full-service retail pharmacy located at Danbury Hospital
  • Emergency medical services
  • An occupational wellness and medicine program, providing services for business and industry

Western Connecticut Health Network has centers of excellence in Women’s, neonatal, cardiovascular and cancer services; weight loss and orthopedic surgery; digestive disorders and radiology and diagnostic imaging. It also offers specialized programs for sleep disorders and asthma management.  Both hospitals also maintain active clinical research programs, offering clinical trials for patients with cancer and other health concerns.

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About Danbury Hospital

Danbury Hospital is a 371-bed regional medical center and university teaching hospital associated with the University of Vermont College of Medicine, the Yale University School of Medicine, the Connecticut School of Medicine and Columbia University Medical Center.  The hospital is nationally recognized as a tertiary health care center with an innovative high-tech, high-touch environment and is also a member of the Planetree organization. In addition to offering the latest robotic and minimally invasive surgical and imaging technology, it was the first hospital in Connecticut to adopt electronic health records systems. It offers a Level II Trauma Center and Level IIIb Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Medical staff members are board-certified in their specialties, and most serve as faculty members of the nation’s finest university medical centers offering a higher level of experience. 

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About New Milford Hospital

New Milford Hospital is a Planetree organization dedicated to patient-centered care that nurtures every patient's body, mind and spirit.  The Hospital has an extraordinary tradition of warm and caring personal attention backed by top-notch physicians, world-class technology and the newest, most advanced diagnostic and treatment options available. Your healthcare team of highly trained physicians, nurses, technicians and administrators is determined and committed to improving the health and quality of life of those we serve.

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