Water skiing, Phys Ed Teacher Keeps Doing it All with New Hip

Richard Garvelink (center) with Dr. Robert Zanotti and Bob Harasty.

When Dr. Robert Zanotti walked into Richard Garvelink’s examining room, Garvelink said he gave him a “funny look.” As it turns out, the look was genuine surprise.

Dr. Zanotti said, ‘I thought you were going to be 75. That hip is not pretty.”

Richard, however, is only 60, and also very active. He’s a high school physical education teacher who likes to waterski. However, in the past 2 years, each time he’d go out on the water, it would take longer and longer to recover. At first it was one full day of recovery and then finally 3 or 4 days, but it was when he could no longer cross his leg that he thought he’d better see someone as a “precautionary thing.” He had no idea how bad it had gotten.

Dr. Zanotti suggested a hip replacement and Richard said, “Not if I can’t get back to being active afterwards. I had fun wearing this hip out and I would do it again.”

But Dr. Zanotti assured him he could most certainly remain active after recovery and do so with less pain. This was good news for Richard, who has summer hiking plans in Yellowstone. “I did decide I better cancel the 9.5 mile trip we scheduled, but we’re keeping some of the lower mile hikes.”

Richard had surgery on March 8th at UH Elyria Medical Center and was in the hospital for 2.5 days. He especially appreciated the hospital therapist, Sharon Hill, affectionately known as “Sarge,” who Richards says is, “encouraging and professional.”

Regular post-op Physical Therapy was done in in Sheffield and Richard said it was a great experience. “Everyone was wonderful. You get out what you put in, and I wanted to get back to skiing and hiking, so I pushed it, but not too much. I was encouraged and pleased with the results.”    

And those results were good. Richard describes his pain level as no more than a 1.5 and was able to return to work at the school within 7 weeks — strong enough to teach the kids Phys Ed.

“Endurance is an issue. At 7 weeks, I can walk about 4 – 5 miles, but I may be a little tired because of it. My students were happy to see me, so it’s been worth it.”

Richard says he would highly recommend Dr. Zanotti and the Physician’s Assistant Bob Harasty. “They are a great team. I was incredibly impressed with every bit of care that I got from them and the staff at UH Elyria and the Physical Therapy team.”

For final thoughts, Richard encourages active people to get checked out. “We active folks tend to ignore physical pain hoping it will go away. But I would absolutely recommend getting it checked out if you can’t do what you normally do. Just get it fixed and move forward. It might ruin a summer of activity, but get it done for all the other summer’s ahead in your future.”

Thank for sharing Richard! If you are having trouble with your hip, don’t delay. Call Dr. Robert Zanotti at CFO to make an appointment. 440.329.2800.



Add comment Posted in  Replacements ,Testimonials June 7, 2017

Pain Free After Hip Replacement

Walter Mackin was pain free and back to work in one week after Dr. John Krebs performed hip replacement surgery.

Ten years ago, construction contractor, Walter Mackin, fell 20 feet off a ladder directly onto concrete and shattered his pelvis. His femur bone went through the back of his pelvis and he reset the hip himself that day. Understandably, he had some trouble afterwards. But he decided to wait on a hip replacement.

“I would hear horror stories from friends and see lawsuit commercials on TV. I decided to just live with the fact that one of my legs was 1 inch shorter than the other.”

During that 10 years of waiting, Walter continued having good medical experiences with the doctors at The Center for Orthopedics. He had his right rotator cuff repaired by Dr. Robert Zanotti and then, after a car accident, had damage repaired his other shoulder… again by Dr. Zannoti.

Walter’s wife worked with Dr. John Krebs at the hospital and knew about the good experiences his patients were having with newer hip replacement technology. All the while, Walter carried around CFO business cards to pass out to his construction worker friends that needed work done. “I’d always just hand them a car and tell them, ‘These guys are good.’”

One day, he realized, it was time to take care of the hip. “I am 73 and my father lived to be 100. It was time to take care of it,” Walter says. He also advises others not to wait. “Don’t be foolish. Don’t listen to the horror stories. Why live with the problems? Don’t hesitate. It’s a better outcome than what you’ve got.”

He had the hip replacement surgery with Dr. Krebs and left the hospital in 3 days. Best of all, he reports he was pain free and physical therapy was a breeze.

“The day after surgery, they told me to get up and walk to the door, but I just walked the entire hallway and all around the nurses station. They made me carry the walker, but I didn’t really need it.”

The next day Walter walked to physical therapy, where they informed him he was way ahead of schedule on recovery. He was able to get in and out of his car that day, and went home the next day. “I carried my walker into my follow up with Dr. Krebs. I thought he might want me to keep it around, but I didn’t ever use it.”

Walter was back at work the next week. And, he says, that was the only time he had any pain. “Honestly, I didn’t have any pain or discomfort until I went up in a crawl space for an inspection and had to duck walk. That was my first week after surgery. That night I was a little sorry, but it didn’t kill me. Believe me, after shattering my pelvis, I know about pain. And with this surgery, I didn’t have any.”

Walter has mixed feelings about waiting 10 years, but says he probably should have had the procedure sooner. “On the one hand, there was better technology, but I wouldn’t advise waiting that long. CFO has done a lot of work for me. And they have done an excellent job each time. I have been busted up and all my procedure’s had great recovery time. If you’re afraid to go, just do it. Don’t be afraid. Go do it.”

There is, however, one drawback to having a new hip. Walter’s legs are now the same height again, but all his shoes have one inch rise on one side.

“After 10 years, I’ve got a lot of these shoes. Maybe I can take them back to the repair shop and have them all put back to normal.”

Thanks for sharing your story, Walter. If you’ve been putting off hip surgery because you’re afraid, take Walter’s advice. Call CFO and make an appointment with Dr. John Krebs at 440.329.2800.

Add comment Posted in  Replacements ,Testimonials May 8, 2017

Start Your Season with a Free Sports Physical

Get your free sports physical by attending our 9th Annual Center for Orthopedics Sports Physical Event on Friday, June 9th. Check-in times: 1 – 5 p.m.

You’re working hard to prepare for the coming season. But before you can take the field, you’ll need a sports physical. Don’t get left on the bench!

Make plans to get yours at the Center for Orthopedics sports physical event. The examination is quick, easy and (best of all) free. All participants will receive a complimentary goody bag and T-shirt, while supplies last.



  • Go to your school website and download the 2017 – 2018 Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) Preparticipation Physical Evaluation Consent form.
  • Complete and sign it with your parent/guardian prior to your scheduled exam or bring your parent/guardian with you – OHSAA forms will be available at the event.
  • You must also bring any relevant medical records.
  • Visit Center4Orthopedics.eventbrite.com no later than Monday, June 5 to schedule your check-in time.
  • Call 440-329-2860 for additional information.


Add comment Posted in  News ,Sports Medicine April 20, 2017

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