You’re Never Too Old to Be “Hip”
At 97-Years-Old, a Redding Man is Pain-Free Following Total Hip Replacement
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Before he underwent hip replacement surgery last November, 97-year-old Henry McQuade had been suffering for years with arthritis pain in his left hip. Then, last fall his pain became so unbearable he worried that he wouldn't be able to do many of the things he loved. Outdoor work, including caring for his stunning field of daffodils, was one of the many activities that Henry, who turns 98 in June, looked forward to each spring.
Henry, a retired Joel Barlow High School teacher who lives alone since his wife died, sought help from Dr. Robert Deveney, an orthopedic joint surgeon at Danbury Hospital and Chairman of the Board of Managers, Western Connecticut Health Network Joint and Spine, LLC. Dr. Deveney advised him that since he was in good, overall health, he was a candidate for hip replacement surgery. "He scheduled my surgery for the very next week," said Henry. "I had been in pain for such a long time. I thought if I could fool others that I wasn't in pain, I'd fool myself. But that didn't work." Henry was happy to learn joint replacement surgery might offer a solution - and that his age was not an obstacle.
Some older patients are reluctant to undergo joint surgery, choosing to live with the discomfort rather than face with what they perceive could be a long and uncertain recovery. But as Dr. Deveney claims and Henry proved, "Age does not exclude someone from having joint replacement surgery. No one should lose years of their life suffering when the procedure can help restore them to active living." Dr. Deveney added, "If they are in good health overall, older patients can have an excellent outcome and a full recovery." The use of spinal versus general anesthesia, along with new pain management and surgical techniques makes joint replacement surgery possible for patients of any age.
Henry was eager to return to his regular chores, and wanted to be back on his feet mowing his lawn, gardening, cooking, cleaning and working in his daffodil field by spring. For more than 30 years, he has been planting more than 1,500 bulbs a year in the field adjacent to his Redding home. By late April, more than 51,000 of the flowers bloom to the joy of neighbors and drivers passing by who often stop to photograph them.
Henry said he had "complete confidence in Dr. Deveney and the hospital staff." The procedure was a total success, and Henry experienced immediate relief of his pain. More importantly, he regained his independence.
The hip replacement also alleviated the pain he was experiencing in his lower back. "I don't have any pain now at all - it's just wonderful," said Henry, who was able to show off his daffodils to visitors once more this spring. After being discharged, Henry began bi-weekly physical therapy sessions, and a schedule of routine check-ups with Dr. Deveney.
Less than six months following the procedure, he was given clearance to do many of the activities he was doing before surgery. There are a few things he is still has on his waiting list, including being back in the driver's seat - and not just the one on his sit-down lawn mower.
"At my age some people have a spare tire, I have a spare car," he beamed. And not just any car. Henry is truly "hip": he drives a 1967 Camaro!
For more information about the Center for Advanced Orthopedic and Spine Care at Danbury Hospital, call 1-800-516-4743.
About Western Connecticut Health Network
Part of Western Connecticut Health Network, Danbury Hospital's Center for Advanced Orthopedic and Spine Care is a Center of Excellence, receiving Joint Commission Disease Certifications in 2012 in hip arthoplasty, knee arthoplasty and spine surgery. The center’s program is managed by a Western Connecticut Health Network Spine and Joint, LLC, a joint venture between Danbury Hospital and affiliated orthopedic and spine surgeons.
Western Connecticut Health Network is the region's premier, patient-centered health care organization serving residents of Western Connecticut and adjacent New York. With this recent affiliation, the organization is now anchored by three nationally recognized hospitals, Danbury Hospital, New Milford Hospital and Norwalk Hospital, as well as their affiliated organizations. In addition to the three hospitals, the continuum of care offered includes numerous medical practices and sub-specialties across the region, home health care services, a nationally renowned biomedical research institute, the Western Connecticut Health Network Foundation, the Norwalk Hospital Foundation and other affiliates. For more information, visit TheNewWCHN.org. Share your comments with us at Facebook.com/DanburyHospital; Facebook.com/NewMilfordHospital and/or Facebook.com/NorwalkHospital.