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

June 7, 2017

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.



Entry Filed under: Replacements,Testimonials. Posted in  Replacements ,Testimonials .

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