For years, Deanna Rapp experienced chronic pain and swelling in her right knee. “It was so bad, it changed how I was walking,” said Rapp. The deterioration in her knee was more than just a physical change that stopped her from being active. It was affecting her sleep, her ability to drive, and her mental health.
“Deanna dealt with arthritis from a very young age,” explained Deanna’s orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Nicholas Weiss. “She had several surgeries to clean-up her knee all without long-term benefit.”
When it was time to discuss a knee replacement, Dr. Weiss helped Deanna determine when she should have it done so she could stay active and healthy.
“He explained everything so well, and was patient and very understanding,” said Deanna. “We talked about how many days I could expect to be in the hospital, what to expect when I went home, and when I needed to follow-up with him and start physical therapy.”
Four months after her knee replacement, Deanna said she was walking her dog and able to scuba dive. “I’m so happy and thankful for my new knee,” she said. “This is better than I could’ve imagined. I’m back to doing what I want, not what my ‘old knee’ would let me do.”
“In the past, we would tell young patients to wait to have a knee replacement because of the shorter life span of the artificial knee,” said Weiss. “Today, we have better techniques and longer lasting materials making up the knee replacement that allows us to feel more comfortable performing knee replacements in younger patients when appropriate. If patients have exhausted conservative treatments, and their knee pain interferes significantly with their quality of life, it makes most sense to replace the knee to eliminate the pain and improve function for these young individuals so they can enjoy the prime of their life and stay healthy.”
“Deanna was an ideal patient. We did our part surgically but it was her hard work after in PT and her positive attitude that really made the surgery a success. It’s amazing the activities she’s able to participate in now that she has healed from her knee replacement. She is truly inspiring!”